For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

References for Theme: Cicero Citations

  • Cicero
    • On Duties (1991)
      (p.57) as for crafts and other means of livelihood, the following is roughly what we have already told as to which should be thought fit for a free man, and which demeaning. First, those means of livelihood that incur the dislike of other men are not approved, for example collecting harbour dues, or usury. Again, all those workers who are paid for their labour and not for their skill have servile and demeaning employment; for in their case the very wage is a contract of servitude. Those who buy from merchants and sell again immediately should also be thought of as...
    • On Duties (1991)
      (p.58) Other arts require greater good sense or else procure substantial benefit, for example, medicine, architecture or teaching things that are honourable. They are honourable for those who belong to the class that they befit. Trade, if it is on a small scale, should be considered demeaning. If, however, men trade on a large and expansive scale, importing many things from all over, and distributing them to many people without misrepresentation, that is not entirely to be criticised. Indeed, if ever such men are satiated, or rather satisfied, with what they have gained, and just as they have often left the...
    • On Duties (1991)
      (p.66–68) Of the things which concern the preservation of human life, some are inanimate, gold and silver, for example, the produce of the earth, and so forth, and some are animate, having their own drives and impulses. Of the latter, some do not share in reason, but others do use it. Horses, cattle and other herd animals, and bees, all of whose efforts contribute something to the needs of human life, are without reason. There are two groups which use reason: gods and men. The gods are placated by devoutness and sacred obvservance. Next to the gods, and close after them,...
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