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William O. Stephens (born 10 June 1962), a scholar of Stoicism, is Professor of Philosophy and Classics at Creighton University, Omaha, NE. Stephens grew up in West Lafayette, IN where he attended West Lafayette Senior High School and began his study of ancient civilizations and Latin. He studied Philosophy at the College of Wooster for two years before transferring to Earlham College, where he earned his undergraduate degree. Stephens completed his graduate work at the University of Pennsylvania, studying under Charles H. Kahn, Alexander Nehamas, and Martin Ostwald. He received his doctorate in Philosophy in May, 1990.

In August 1990, he joined the faculty at Creighton University where he received the Omicron Delta Kappa Teaching for Tomorrow award in 2005. During his tenure at Creighton, Stephens has published four books and numerous articles on topics including Stoic ethics, Epicureanism, philosophical vegetarianism, personhood and sex and love.[1] He has also written on being a Stoic and a Chicago Cubs fan, and on the similarities the Jedi philosophy in Star Wars shares with Stoicism.[2] He delivered a presentation on phobias, terrorism, and Stoic fearlessness [3] at Stoicon in Toronto, Canada, October 14, 2017.


  • Marcus Aurelius: A Guide for the Perplexed. London: Continuum, 2012. ISBN 978-1-4411-2561-3.
  • Stoic Ethics: Epictetus and Happiness as Freedom. London: Continuum, 2007. ISBN 0-8264-9608-3.
  • The Person: Readings in Human Nature. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson, 2006. ISBN 978-0-13-184811-5.
  • The Ethics of the Stoic Epictetus, William O. Stephens trans., New York: Peter Lang, 1996. ISBN 0-8204-3027-7.


  1. ^ Avi Solomon at 7:46 am Fri, Nov 4, 2011 (2011-11-04). "Interview with a Stoic: William O. Stephens". Boing Boing. Retrieved 2014-07-29.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ Stephen Hanselman at 9:22 am Wed, July 26, 2017 (2017-07-26). "Is There a Connection Between the Jedi and the Stoics? Professor William O. Stephens Has the Answer". Daily Stoic. Retrieved 2017-11-17.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  3. ^ Gregory Sadler at 9:00 am Sat, Oct 28, 2017 (2017-10-28). "Phobias, Terrorism, and Stoic Fearlessness by William O. Stephens". Modern Stoicism. Retrieved 2017-11-17.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)

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