Volume 14, Issue 1, Fall 2009
The Virtue of Suicide and the Suicide of Virtue
A Reading of Cicero’s On Ends and Tusculan Disputations
This paper argues that suicide is very important for Cicero’s articulation and defense of the philosophical life. Happiness, according to Cicero, is dependent upon a willingness to commit suicide. I explain why this is the case through a discussion of On Ends and the Tusculan Disputations. I conclude with some critical remarks about Cicero’s argument, with reference to book XIX of Augustine’s City of God.