Christopher Moore, 2020–21

The Virtue of Agency: Sôphrosunê and Selfhood in Ancient Greece

Robert F. and Margaret S. Goheen Fellowship, 2020-21

Associate Professor of Philosophy and Classics, The Pennsylvania State University

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Christopher Moore

Christopher Moore is a scholar of classical Greek philosophy and intellectual history, with a focus on Socrates, self-knowledge, and disciplinary origins. His early publications deal with certain little-known arguments, literary quotations, and characters in some of Plato’s dialogues. Later publications address the evolution of several terms for fundamental ethical concepts. His first book, Socrates and Self-Knowledge, reconstructed classical reflections on the Delphic “Know Yourself” and used it to explain Socrates’ leading purpose, his pursuit of self-knowledge, and his encouragement of others to get it. Several edited collections retell the reception of the figure and thought of Socrates through the history of philosophy. Last year’s book, Calling Philosophers Names, gives a new etymology to philosophos and tells the early history of “philosophy” as a developing self-understanding of that very word.

Ongoing projects include a history of the canonical Greek virtue, sôphrosunê, recognizing it as the virtue of agency (the project for the Center); a jointly edited Cambridge Companion to the Sophists; a jointly edited edition of the texts and testimonia to Critias of Athens; the posthumous publication of the works of Sears Jayne; and a history of the first “public intellectuals” of ancient Greece.

Before The Pennsylvania State University, he taught at Texas-Austin and Skidmore. His degrees are from Dartmouth and Minnesota.

Selected Publications

Socrates and Self-Knowledge

  • Moore, Christopher. Calling Philosophers Names: On the Origins of a Discipline. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2020.
  • Moore, Christopher, ed. Brill’s Companion to the Reception of Socrates. Boston: Brill, 2019.
  • Plato. Charmides. Translated, with Introduction, Notes, and Analysis by Christopher Moore, and Christopher C. Raymond. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett, 2019.
  • Stavru, Alessandro, and Christopher Moore. Socrates and the Socratic Dialogue. Boston: Brill, 2018.
  • Moore, Christopher. Socrates and Self-Knowledge. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2015.