Just finished grading the final exams & term papers for my Fall '11 introductory courses on ethical theory.
So here was my big surprise: everybody wanted to talk about stoicism!
Well, not everybody, of course - I'm exaggerating. But lots & lots of people - way more than I would have expected.
I'd never taught Epictetus, before, and hadn't even read Marcus Aurelius. And, at first glance, I thought it might be an uphill battle to explain to American kids today whatever appeal their extremely fatalistic views might once have had - geared, as they were, to a harsh and brutal human landscape long since gone.
The more fool I! Apparently, the sense that one is a plaything of the heartless gods, and that salvation lies in passive acceptance of their will, is alive and well, and needs no defense from me.