Talk:Cynicism (philosophy)

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Good article Cynicism (philosophy) has been listed as one of the Philosophy and religion good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
May 9, 2010 Good article nominee Listed

separate articles[edit]

The modern usage of the term "cynic" is fairly clearly divorced from the ancient philosophical school. They should retain separate articles, since they are very much separate ideas. (anon)


I removed the merger template because the ancient school of philosophy is too different from the current meaning of the word, as also described by anon here. Andries 10:50, 5 Jun 2005 (UTC)

""A cynic is one who knows the price of everything but the value of nothing." --Oscar Wilde" should not appear on Cynic (school of philosophy) page as it clearly refers to the modern definition of cynicism, not the philosophical school.

    • I would think that a discussion that bridges to the evolution to the modern usage would be essential in making this a really useful article. When a reader encounters a definition that is 180 degrees removed from the general understanding of the term, that merits some explanation. Douglas Brown.

POV[edit]

The last two paragraphs have a lot of POV. "Cynicism must be regarded"…"its defective psychology, its barren logic, its immature technique"…"two great and necessary truths"…"it is necessary to point out two flaws"…"separate the wheat from the chaff"…"a saner and more comprehensive meaning" and so forth. That's all from 1911 Brittanica, right? Anyway, they should be rewritten.

Yet another 1911 Brittanica orphan. Same thing on Potemkin. Needs a rewrite. --Yossarian Soviet Canuckistan Flag.PNG 05:29, 18 July 2006 (UTC)
Done. It still lacks citations for the opinionated phrase "defective psychology, barren logic, and immature technique", though.

cynicism and the will[edit]

In the sections 'Antisthenes' and 'Supporters', I found two passages troubling: "The ordinary pleasures of life were for them not merely negligible but positively harmful inasmuch as they interrupted the operation of the will" and "Cynicism emphasizes two principles: [...] the autocracy of the will.". Is it not the case that the concept of the 'will' is derived from Christian doctrine (Augustine, etc.) and that there is no equivalent word in the Greek? If I am not mistaken, it would be quite inappropriate to use the concept of the 'will' in articulating Antisthenes cynicism. EmileNoldeSinclair 00:33, 7 July 2007 (UTC)

values and possessions[edit]

I read a greek play... or was it a poem... (I have (obviously) forgotten the name of both the work and its author, otherwise I might have added this to the article) where several dead people are on the ferry to the underworld when it springs a leak. Everybody must throw all their possessions overboard at first, but it's not enough, it gets to be fairly esoteric. The philosopher must throw his wisdom and his large words overboard, the strongman must throw his muscles overboard, the lawmaker his morals, etc. However, the cynic has nothing to throw overboard. The ferryman values this greatly, and gives him the honor of taking away the possessions of the others. It's rather strange. If anyone knows the name of this play/poem/piece, please tell me. I'm sure I (or you) can find something to add to the article... even if it is just an addition to the 'cynics in literature' section —Preceding unsigned comment added by oneoverzero (talkcontribs)

Tells me about the who, not about the what[edit]

This is a problem with articles on wikipedia sometimes. They explain who was involved, and who thought what, but don't explain the concept itself. :-/

--Kim Bruning 06:28, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

Rewrite of this page.[edit]

I answered the call to "Clean Up" this page. I'm supposed to document what I've done here. Basically, I rewrote the entire thing from scratch, except, I think, the very first sentence, and I think I adopted a couple of sentences for the "Cynicism in the Roman World" section. I kept the external links, but I did remove a section on Cynicism in Literature, which had nothing to do with ancient Cynicism.

The stuff about Antisthenes which was here before I moved to the Antisthenes page, (but even then, I cut out a middle section, which seemed too opinionated for my liking - like a lot of these Encyclopædia Britannica 1911 articles.)

Anyway, it's hardly perfect, but I hope this page is bit better now. Singinglemon 00:15, 13 October 2007 (UTC)

GA pass[edit]

I find that this article meets the Good Article criteria. A few further comments can be found at my review. Shimeru (talk) 03:03, 9 May 2010 (UTC) Talk:Cynicism/GA1

Merge Cynic into Cynicism[edit]

Propose - Merge Cynic into Cynicism. Two articles are not required on one subject. Currently Cynic is the main article, but Cynicism is the better term to describe the philosophy, as per Asceticism rather than Ascetic (redirect). Once merge complete, I suggest setting up a redirect from Cynic to Cynicism. nirvana2013 (talk) 12:23, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

  • Agree - Given the Ascetic precedent, this seems like a logical move. I would be willing to assist with the merge whenever you want to start. - Deathsythe (talk) 12:58, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

No objections posted after 10 days, so I have completed the merger. This article could do with further tidying and Wikipedia:Good article reassessment. Not sure what to do with Talk:Cynic. As for the merger of Modern cynicism into this article, they seem very different concepts. Perhaps we need two articles Cynicism (philosophy) and Cynicism (contemporary), with a cross-definition on both articles plus a disambiguation page for Cynicism. Skepticism has encountered a similar issue between Philosophical skepticism and the modern term. nirvana2013 (talk) 19:22, 24 May 2010 (UTC)

I'm sorry I wasn't around, or I would have mildly objected to this. Or more accurately, I would have liked further discussion on what to call the two pages on the two concepts of Cynicism. It is a problem in the English language that the ancient and modern views have exactly the same name - in some European languages they actually call the modern form "Cynism" to distinguish it from ancient Cynicism. (On a personal note - I've done a lot of work to this article on the ancient Cynics to raise it up to Good Article status, and now I'm alarmed to see my nice newly-acquired project banners are still on Talk:Cynic!). I actually think that your idea of Cynicism (philosophy) and Cynicism (contemporary) is a better solution. And then we can move Talk:Cynic to Talk:Cynicism (philosophy) - it has been the talk page for discussing the ancient philosophy for the past 5 years, it was a mistake to orphan it. Singinglemon (talk) 21:18, 28 May 2010 (UTC)
Well done on bringing the article up to Good Article status. I think Talk:Cynic and this page either need to be merged, or one of them moved to the other as an archived talk page, or one of them merged into Talk:Modern cynicism. I agree that Talk:Cynic seems the more active discussion area over the past few years, so should take priority. I have no problem with Cynicism (philosophy) and Cynicism (contemporary) as article titles. nirvana2013 (talk) 09:19, 30 May 2010 (UTC)

Modern day usage[edit]

Surely this article should more thoroughly cover what the modern day understanding of 'cynicism' is (e.g. expand on what's covered by the like-titled wiktionary article). —Preceding unsigned comment added by 58.175.113.40 (talk) 02:28, 13 December 2010 (UTC)

Except that the modern day usage is incorrect and unrelated to this ethical system. A well written article or two (this article and the related readings that can be found on Stanford university "Plato" collections are good places to start) can help undo some of the damage of having one of the most historically notable movements being associated with useless pessimism. Cynicism is used hand in hand with skepticism and pessimism, the original meaning is needlessly obscured by the miss use of words people don't understand. That is how languages decay. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 93.220.85.172 (talk) 21:22, 16 September 2011 (UTC)

Propose move: Cynicism (ancient philosophy)[edit]

I propose moving this article to Cynicism (ancient philosophy).

This is to better complement Cynicism (contemporary), and to reduce confusion between cynic and wikt:cynic. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 02:45, 9 January 2011 (UTC)

I have changed the template at the top of the article. This should help to stop confusion. Nirvana2013 (talk) 07:34, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
I am still confused and thus support the move. In the meantime I have redirected ambiguous terms such as Cynic, Cynical and Cynism to Cynic (disambiguation). --Kvng (talk) 17:55, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
The redirect changes resulted in a WP:MALPLACED disambiguation page (Cynic > Cynic (disambiguation)]]. Since "cynical" is only mentioned on the contemporary article, I've updated it to point there, but reverted the other to back to Cynicism. If Cynicism becomes a disambiguation page because of this request, that will be the appropriate target for them as well. Cheers! -- JHunterJ (talk) 11:37, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: closed after 47 days: pages moved: CynicismCynicism (philosophy) and Cynic (disambiguation) to Cynic. Anthony Appleyard (talk) 15:24, 12 September 2012 (UTC)


CynicismCynicism (ancient philosophy) – To better complement Cynicism (contemporary), and to reduce confusion between cynic and wikt:cynic. No WP:PRIMARYTOPIC. --Relisted Cúchullain t/c 13:58, 13 August 2012 (UTC)Kvng (talk) 13:30, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

  • Support though the modern version may even be primary, considering its widespread usage. I doubt the ancient Greek version is primary. -- 76.65.131.160 (talk) 02:15, 27 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Comment Why not just "philosophy"? Ancient philosophy seems a bit too long. Unreal7 (talk)
  • Relisting comment It would be helpful to see evidence as to whether this is or isn't the WP:PRIMARYTOPIC, as well as further input on whether "philosophy" would be a better disambiguator.--Cúchullain t/c 13:58, 13 August 2012 (UTC)
Arguments against WP:PRIMARYTOPIC: The philosophical definition of cynicism doesn't consistently appear first in dictionaries. Cynicism (this article) is viewed about 1200 times a day. Cynicism (contemporary) is viewed about 450 times. Given that it's a more direct path to Cynicism from common search terms, I don't think we can say with confidence that one article is overwhelmingly more visited by readers that the other. --Kvng (talk) 13:24, 15 August 2012 (UTC)
  • Rename to Cynicism (philosophy) per Unreal7. The philosophy, ancient/classical or Greek, is not the PRIMARYTOPIC because the use of the contemporary word is common. I suggest moving Cynic (disambiguation) to Cynicism. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 15:05, 31 August 2012 (UTC) I do not remember reading this article previously, or making my comment of 02:45, 9 January 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

cynicism to Cynicism[edit]

I restored the word "cynics" to "Cynics" in this article. At some point recent!y someone has lowercased the word. Although the lowercase version might look more correct the fact is that standard usage in English-language textbooks is that the ancient philosophy is always capitalized as Cynicism to distinguish it from the modern depressive zeitgeist which is kept lowercase as cynicism. 86.184.196.105 (talk) 01:04, 21 March 2016 (UTC)