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  1. Death Does Not Harm the One Who Dies Because There is No One to Harm.David E. Rowe - manuscript
    If death is a harm then it is a harm that cannot be experienced. The proponent of death's harm must therefore provide an answer to Epicurus, when he says that ‘death, is nothing to us, since when we are, death is not present, and when death is present, then we are not’. In this paper I respond to the two main ways philosophers have attempted to answer Epicurus, regarding the subject of death's harm: either directly or via analogy. The direct (...)
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  2. Fighting Aging as an Effective Altruism Cause: A Model of the Impact of the Clinical Trials of Simple Interventions.Alexey Turchin - manuscript
    The effective altruism movement aims to save lives in the most cost-effective ways. In the future, technology will allow radical life extension, and anyone who survives until that time will gain potentially indefinite life extension. Fighting aging now increases the number of people who will survive until radical life extension becomes possible. We suggest a simple model, where radical life extension is achieved in 2100, the human population is 10 billion, and life expectancy is increased by simple geroprotectors like metformin (...)
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  3. The Rationality of Suicide and the Meaningfulness of Life.Michael Cholbi - forthcoming - In Iddo Landau (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Meaning in Life.
    A wide body of psychological research corroborates the claim that whether one’s life is (or will be) meaningful appears relevant to whether it is rational to continue living. This article advances conceptions of life’s meaningfulness and of suicidal choice with an eye to ascertaining how the former might provide justificatory reasons relevant to the latter. Drawing upon the recent theory of meaningfulness defended by Cheshire Calhoun, the decision to engage in suicide can be understood as a choice related to life’s (...)
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  4. Fear of Death: A Paradox for Believers in Reincarnation?Donatella Dolcini - forthcoming - Governare la Paura. Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies.
    It seems that fearing the death and believing in an almost endless cycle of rebirths is a paradox, but in India it is an actual attitude of the majority of religious local creeds. The painful ways in which death happens, the frightening netherworld in which the dead must be punished, the sad missing of one’s family and friends, the uncertainty of the new form in which the imperishable soul might dwell in its new life, all these are the basic elements (...)
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  5. Permanent Value.Christopher Frugé - forthcoming - Journal of the American Philosophical Association.
    Temporal nihilism is the view that our lives won’t matter after we die. According to the standard interpretation, this is because our lives won’t make a permanent difference. Many who consider the view thus reject it by denying that our lives need to have an eternal impact. However, in this paper, I develop a different formulation of temporal nihilism revolving around the persistence of personal value itself. According to this stronger version, we do not have personal value after death, so (...)
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  6. Taking Stock of the Risks of Life Without Death.August Gorman - forthcoming - In Travis Timmerman & Michael Cholbi (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. Routledge.
    In this chapter I argue that choosing to live forever comes with the threat of an especially pernicious kind of boredom. However, it may be theoretically possible to circumvent it by finding ways to pursue an infinite number of projects consistent with one’s personality, taking on endlessly pursuable endlessly interesting projects, or by rekindling old projects once you’ve forgotten about them. However, each of these possibilities is contingent upon having certain traits that you are likely not currently in a good (...)
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  7. Against “the Badness of Death”.Hilary Greaves - forthcoming - In Gamlund and Solberg (ed.), Saving People from the Harm of Death. Oxford, USA: Oxford University Press.
    I argue that excessive reliance on the notion of “the badness of death” tends to lead theorists astray when thinking about healthcare prioritisation. I survey two examples: the confusion surrounding the “time-relative interests account” of the badness of death, and a confusion in the recent literature on cost-benefit analyses for family planning interventions. In both cases, the confusions in question would have been avoided if (instead of attempting to theorise in terms of the badness of death) theorists had forced themselves (...)
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  8. The Premature Death of Path Dependence.David M. Levy - forthcoming - Complexity.
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  9. Does the Lack of Cosmic Meaning Make Our Lives Bad?Thaddeus Metz - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry.
    This article is part of a special issue devoted to David Benatar’s anti-natalism. There are places in his oeuvre where he contends that, while our lives might be able to exhibit some terrestrial or human meaning, that is not enough to make them worth creating, which would require a cosmic meaning that is unavailable to us. There are those who maintain, in reply to Benatar, that some of our lives do have a cosmic meaning, but I grant Benatar here that (...)
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  10. Comparing the Meaningfulness of Finite and Infinite Lives.Thaddeus Metz - forthcoming - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement.
    On the rise over the past 20 years has been ‘moderate supernaturalism’, the view that while a meaningful life is possible in a world without God or a soul, a much greater meaning would be possible only in a world with them. William Lane Craig can be read as providing an important argument for a version of this view, according to which only with God and a soul could our lives have an eternal, as opposed to temporally limited, significance, by (...)
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  11. What Makes Life Meaningful? A Debate.Thaddeus Metz & Joshua Seachris - forthcoming - Routledge.
    A debate between Thaddeus Metz and Joshua Seachris on what makes life meaningful, with emphasis on the potential relevance of God, immortality, narrative and achievements. Composed for undergraduates and generally educated readers.
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  12. Living Without Fear.Tim O'Keefe - forthcoming - In Nathan Powers & Jacob Klein (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Hellenistic Philosophy.
    Explores the role of eliminating fear in Epicurean ethics and physics, focusing on techniques to eliminate the fear of death and the fear of the gods.
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  13. Death's Shadow Lightened.Daniel Rubio - forthcoming - In Sara Bernstein & Tyron Goldschmidt (eds.), Non-being: New Essays on the Metaphysics of Non-existence. Oxford, UK:
    Epicurus (in)famously argued that death is not harmful and therefore our standard reactions to it (like deep fear of death and going to great lengths to postpone it) are not rational, inaugurating an ongoing debate about the harm of death. Those who wish to resist this conclusion must identify the harm of death. But not any old harm will do. In order to resist both the claim that death is not harmful and the claim that our standard reactions to it (...)
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  14. The Ethics of Exaggerated Harm.Mary Ann Sushinsky, David Mertz & Udo Schüklenk - forthcoming - Bioethics.
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  15. Dissolving Death’s Time-of-Harm Problem.Travis Timmerman - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy.
    Most philosophers in the death literature believe that death can be bad for the person who dies. The most popular view of death’s badness—namely, deprivationism—holds that death is bad for the person who dies because, and to the extent that, it deprives them of the net good that they would have accrued, had their actual death not occurred. Deprivationists thus face the challenge of locating the time that death is bad for a person. This is known as the Timing Problem, (...)
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  16. Death in Mind: Life, Meaning and Mortality.Kathy Behrendt - 2021 - In Travis Timmerman & Michael Cholbi (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 245-252.
    Does thinking about our death help or hinder us? I will approach this question by looking at which portions of a life can bear meaning, i.e. whether meaning is local (something that attaches to parts of a life taken in isolation from one another) or global (resulting from the combination of, or interrelations among, events in life as a whole). I present two versions of the “part life” view of meaning and two versions of the “whole life” view. I show (...)
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  17. How Much Does Slaughter Harm Humanely Raised Animals? 1.Coleman Solis - 2021 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 38 (2):258-272.
    Some believe that it is immoral to harm animals, but it is not immoral to kill humanely raised domesticated animals. Implicit in this is the assumption that it is possible to raise and slaughter animals without harming them significantly. In recent years, a number of philosophers – DeGrazia, Harman, Bradley, and others – have claimed that slaughter harms an animal in proportion to the amount of valuable future life that an animal loses in dying, which seems to challenge this assumption. (...)
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  18. If You Want to Die Later, Then Why Don't You Want to Have Been Born Earlier?Travis Timmerman - 2021 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. New York:
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  19. Well-Being and the Good Death.Stephen M. Campbell - 2020 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 23 (3):607-623.
    The philosophical literature on well-being and the good life contains very little explicit discussion of what makes for a better or worse death. The purpose of this essay is to highlight some commonly held views about the good death and investigate whether these views are recognized by the leading theories of well-being. While the most widely discussed theories do have implications about what constitutes a good death, they seem unable to fully accommodate these popular good death views. I offer two (...)
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  20. Review of The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Death. [REVIEW]Subhasis Chattopadhyay - 2020 - Prabuddha Bharata or Awakened India 125 (2):336-37.
    This is a howler of a handbook. The review shows how in the name of academics, philosophers indulge in quid pro quos in high places. They have no clue about what they are writing. As a Benedictine Abbot in the US responded in email to this reviewer: "Yes, indeed, the book is not very serious. When the authors die some day, they will understand better, as we all shall see". Now that death is in the air; we will understand what (...)
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  21. Ethical Allocation of Remdesivir.Parker Crutchfield, Tyler S. Gibb, Michael J. Redinger & William Fales - 2020 - American Journal of Bioethics 20 (7):84-86.
    As the federal government distributed remdesivir to some of the states COVID-19 hit hardest, policymakers scrambled to develop criteria to allocate the drug to their hospitals. Our state, Michigan, was among those states to receive an initial quantity of the drug from the U.S. government. The disparities in burden of disease in Michigan are striking. Detroit has a death rate more than three times the state average. Our recommendation to the state was that it should prioritize the communities that bear (...)
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  22. Valuing Humane Lives in Two-Level Utilitarianism.Nicolas Delon - 2020 - Utilitas 32 (3):276-293.
    I examine the two-level utilitarian case for humane animal agriculture (by R. M. Hare and Gary Varner) and argue that it fails on its own terms. The case states that, at the ‘intuitive level’ of moral thinking, we can justify raising and killing animals for food, regarding them as replaceable, while treating them with respect. I show that two-level utilitarianism supports, instead, alternatives to animal agriculture. First, the case for humane animal agriculture does not follow from a commitment to two-level (...)
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  23. Death, Immortality, and Meaning in Life.John Martin Fischer - 2020 - New York: Oxford University Press.
  24. Epicureanism and Skepticism About Practical Reason.Christopher Frugé - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (2):195-208.
    Epicureans believe that death cannot harm the one who dies because they hold the existence condition, which states that a subject is able to be harmed only while they exist. I show that on one reading of this condition death can, in fact, make the deceased worse off because it is satisfied by the deprivation account of death’s badness. I argue that the most plausible Epicurean view holds the antimodal existence condition, according to which no merely possible state of affairs (...)
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  25. The Gift of Death.Joshua Glasgow - 2020 - The Philosophers' Magazine 91:94-98.
    Is there a benefit to dying around 75 or 80 years old? Ezekiel Emmanuel argues that there is, but his reasoning is dubious. However it is argued here that Emmanuel is right that there is another benefit in store for the adult children of the one who dies.
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  26. The Solace: Finding Value in Death Through Gratitude for Life.Joshua Glasgow - 2020 - Oup Usa.
    Mourning the loss of loved ones can be one of the hardest things we go through. But what if we changed the way we thought about it, and learned to find positive value in death as part of life? This book examines how we can take solace in the fact that we and our loved ones will die, surprising or impossible as that may seem. Along the way, it investigates the nature of gratitude, how good and bad relate, and enduring (...)
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  27. Death and Prudential Deprivation.Matthew W. G. McClure - 2020 - Pense (Edinb.) 1:29–41.
    Dying is (sometimes) bad for the dier because it prevents her from being the subject of wellbeing she otherwise would (the deprivation account). I argue for this from a (plausible) principle about which futures are bad for a prudential subject (the future-comparison principle). A strengthening of this principle yields that death is not always bad, and that the badness of death does not consist in that it destroys the dier.
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  28. Meaning in Life in Spite of Death.Thaddeus Metz - 2020 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. Routledge. pp. 253-261.
    In this chapter the author critically explores answers to the question of how immortality would affect the meaningfulness of a person’s life, understood roughly as a life that merits esteem, achieves purposes much more valuable than pleasure, or makes for a good life-story. The author expounds three arguments for thinking that life would be meaningless if it were mortal, and provides objections to them. He then offers a reason for thinking that a mortal life could be meaningful, and responds to (...)
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  29. New Reflections on the Mirror: the Interests Proximity Bias Solution.Ricardo Miguel & Diogo Santos - 2020 - Philosophia 48 (4):1527-1542.
    We worry about becoming non-existent, but not about coming into being. But both events are similarly bad according to Deprivationism; hence, it seems that we should display symmetric attitudes towards both. This entails the implausible conclusion that we should display negative attitudes towards the time of our birth. In a series of articles Brueckner and Fischer offered one of the most prominent attempts to block this conclusion by appealing to a temporal bias towards future pleasures. Inspired by Yi’s criticism of (...)
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  30. The (Un)Desirability of Immortality.Felipe Pereira & Travis Timmerman - 2020 - Philosophy Compass 15 (2).
    While most people believe the best possible life they could lead would be an immortal one, so‐called “immortality curmudgeons” disagree. Following Bernard Williams, they argue that, at best, we have no prudential reason to live an immortal life, and at worst, an immortal life would necessarily be bad for creatures like us. In this article, we examine Bernard Williams' seminal argument against the desirability of immortality and the subsequent literature it spawned. We first reconstruct and motivate Williams' somewhat cryptic argument (...)
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  31. An Irrational Suicide?Jukka Varelius - 2020 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classical and Contemporary Perspectives.
  32. The Dignity of Human Life: Sketching Out an 'Equal Worth' Approach.Helen Watt - 2020 - Ethics and Medicine 36 (1):7-17.
    The term “value of life” can refer to life’s intrinsic dignity: something nonincremental and time-unaffected in contrast to the fluctuating, incremental “value” of our lives, as they are longer or shorter and more or less flourishing. Human beings are equal in their basic moral importance: the moral indignities we condemn in the treatment of e.g. those with dementia reflect the ongoing human dignity that is being violated. Indignities licensed by the person in advance remain indignities, as when people might volunteer (...)
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  33. Unmoored: Mortal Harm and Mortal Fear.Kathy Behrendt - 2019 - Philosophical Papers 48 (2):179-209.
    There is a fear of death that persistently eludes adequate explanation by contemporary philosophers of death. The reason for this is their focus on mortal harm issues, such as why death is bad for the person who dies. Claims regarding the fear of death are assumed to be contingent on the resolution of questions about the badness of death. In practice, however, consensus on some mortal harm issues has not resulted in comparable clarity on mortal fear. I contend we cannot (...)
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  34. Saving People From the Harm of Death.Espen Gamlund & Carl Tollef Solberg (eds.) - 2019 - New York: Oxford University Press.
    Death is something we mourn or fear as the worst thing that could happen―whether the deaths of close ones, the deaths of strangers in reported accidents or tragedies, or our own. And yet, being dead is something that no one can experience and live to describe. This simple truth raises a host of difficult philosophical questions about the negativity surrounding our sense of death, and how and for whom exactly it is harmful. The question of whether death is bad has (...)
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  35. Euthanasia Laws, Slippery Slopes, and (Un)Reasonable Precaution.Friderik Klampfer - 2019 - Prolegomena: Časopis Za Filozofiju 18 (2):121-147.
    The article examines the so-called slippery slope argument (SSA) against the legalization of active voluntary euthanasia (AVE). According to the SSA, by legalizing AVE, the least morally controversial type of euthanasia, we will take the first step onto a slippery slope and inevitably end up in the moral abyss of widespread abuse and violations of the rights of the weakest and most vulnerable patients. In the first part of the paper, empirical evidence to the contrary is presented and analyzed: None (...)
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  36. Euthanasia Laws, Slippery Slopes, and (Un)Reasonable Precaution.Friderik Klampfer - 2019 - Prolegomena: Časopis Za Filozofiju 18 (2):121-147.
    The article examines the so-called slippery slope argument (SSA) against the legalization of active voluntary euthanasia (AVE). According to the SSA, by legalizing AVE, the least morally controversial type of euthanasia, we will take the first step onto a slippery slope and inevitably end up in the moral abyss of widespread abuse and violations of the rights of the weakest and most vulnerable patients. In the first part of the paper, empirical evidence to the contrary is presented and analyzed: None (...)
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  37. Mort (Entrée Grand Public, L'Encyclopédie Philosophique).Federico Lauria - 2019 - L'Encyclopédie Philosophique.
    La mort nous afflige, nous angoisse, voire nous terrifie. Qu’est-ce que la mort ? La tristesse et l’angoisse face à la mort sont-elles justifiées ? La mort est-elle un mal ? Vaudrait-il mieux être immortel ? Comment comprendre le deuil ? Cette entrée propose un aperçu des questions principales de la philosophie contemporaine de la mort. Tentons de sonder l’énigme la plus tragique de la vie.
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  38. What Matters in the Mirror of Time: Why Lucretius’ Symmetry Argument Fails.Lukas J. Meier - 2019 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 97 (4):651-660.
    abstractBy appealing to the similarity between pre-vital and post-mortem nonexistence, Lucretius famously tried to show that our anxiety about death was irrational. His so-called Symmetry Argument has been attacked in various ways, but all of these strategies are themselves problematic. In this paper, I propose a new approach to undermining the argument: when Parfit’s distinction between identity and what matters is applied, not diachronically but across possible worlds, the alleged symmetry can be broken. Although the pre-vital and posthumous time spans (...)
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  39. God, Soul and the Meaning of Life.Thaddeus Metz - 2019 - Cambridge University Press.
    Part of the Elements Philosophy of Religion series, this short book focuses on the spiritual dimensions of life’s meaning as they have been discussed in the recent English and mainly analytic philosophical literature. The overarching philosophical question that this literature has addressed is about the extent to which, and respects in which, spiritual realities such as God or a soul would confer meaning on our lives. There have been four broad answers to the question, namely: God or a soul is (...)
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  40. Putting a Number on the Harm of Death.Joseph Millum - 2019 - In Espen Gamlund & Carl Tollef Solberg (eds.), Saving People from the Harm of Death. Oxford University Press. pp. 61-75.
    Donors to global health programs and policymakers within national health systems have to make difficult decisions about how to allocate scarce health care resources. Principled ways to make these decisions all make some use of summary measures of health, which provide a common measure of the value (or disvalue) of morbidity and mortality. They thereby allow comparisons between health interventions with different effects on the patterns of death and ill health within a population. The construction of a summary measure of (...)
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  41. Asymmetries in the Value of Existence.Jacob M. Nebel - 2019 - Philosophical Perspectives 33 (1):126-145.
    According to asymmetric comparativism, it is worse for a person to exist with a miserable life than not to exist, but it is not better for a person to exist with a happy life than not to exist. My aim in this paper is to explain how asymmetric comparativism could possibly be true. My account of asymmetric comparativism begins with a different asymmetry, regarding the (dis)value of early death. I offer an account of this early death asymmetry, appealing to the (...)
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  42. Deep Uncertainties in the Criteria for Physician Aid-in-Dying for Psychiatric Patients.Piotr Grzegorz Nowak & Tomasz Żuradzki - 2019 - American Journal of Bioethics 19 (10):54-56.
    In their insightful article, Brent Kious and Margaret Battin (2019) correctly identify an inconsistency between an involuntary psychiatric commitment for suicide prevention and physician aid in dying (PAD). They declare that it may be possible to resolve the problem by articulating “objective standards for evaluating the severity of others’ suffering,” but ultimately they admit that this task is beyond the scope of their article since the solution depends on “a deep and difficult” question about comparing the worseness of two possible (...)
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  43. The Worseness of Nonexistence.Theron Pummer - 2019 - In Espen Gamlund and Carl Tollef Solberg (ed.), Saving People from the Harm of Death. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 215-228.
    Most believe that it is worse for a person to die than to continue to exist with a good life. At the same time, many believe that it is not worse for a merely possible person never to exist than to exist with a good life. I argue that if the underlying properties that make us the sort of thing we essentially are can come in small degrees, then to maintain this commonly-held pair of beliefs we will have to embrace (...)
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  44. A Dilemma for Epicureanism.Travis Timmerman - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (1):241-257.
    Perhaps death’s badness is an illusion. Epicureans think so and argue that agents cannot be harmed by death when they’re alive nor when they’re dead. I argue that each version of Epicureanism faces a fatal dilemma: it is either committed to a demonstrably false view about the relationship between self-regarding reasons and well-being or it is involved in a merely verbal dispute with deprivationism. I first provide principled reason to think that any viable view about the badness of death must (...)
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  45. An Evaluation of Epicurus and Lukretius' Perceptions of Death and Non-Existence.Mustafa Çakmak - 2018 - Beytulhikme An International Journal of Philosophy 8 (1):357-376.
  46. The Meaning of Killing. [REVIEW]Nicolas Delon - 2018 - Books and Ideas 2018.
    Why do we consider killing and letting someone die to be two different things? Why do we believe that a doctor who refuses to treat a terminally ill patient is doing anything less than administering a lethal substance? After all, the consequences are the same, and perhaps the moral status of these acts should be judged accordingly. -/- Reviewed: Jonathan Glover, Questions de vie ou de mort (Causing Death and Saving Lives), translated into French and introduced by Benoît Basse, Genève, (...)
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  47. Egoismus, Altruismus Und Die Furcht Vor Dem Eigenen Tod. Ein Beitrag Zur Analytischen Existenzphilosophie.Thomas Grundmann - 2018 - Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 72 (4):465-491.
    In this paper I will argue that Bernard William’s theory of frustrated desires is superior to Tom Nagel's theory of deprivation in explaining when and why death is harmful to oneself. The model of frustrated desires will then be applied contrastively to the altruist and the egoist. Contrary to what one might expect, death is not a misfortune only to the egoist. The truth is more nuanced. Nevertheless, there is a significant difference between what death means to the altruist and (...)
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  48. Murdering an Accident Victim: A New Objection to the Bare-Difference Argument.Scott Hill - 2018 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 96 (4):767-778.
    Many philosophers, psychologists, and medical practitioners believe that killing is no worse than letting die on the basis of James Rachels's Bare-Difference Argument. I show that his argument is unsound. In particular, a premise of the argument is that his examples are as similar as is consistent with one being a case of killing and the other being a case of letting die. However, the subject who lets die has both the ability to kill and the ability to let die (...)
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  49. Why Die – a Philosophical Apology of Death.Heine A. Holmen - 2018 - International Journal of Philosophy and Theology 79 (1-2):136-155.
    In the Insanity Defence Woody Allen claims that when we say humans are mortal we are obviously not complimenting them. It is difficult to contradict great comedy, of course, but if what I argue holds, Allen is wrong on this account. Mortality is a compliment – or at least something for which we should be grateful – since life without it threatens with disaster. To live without death also means living in the universe in its more hostile stages under conditions (...)
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  50. Death is a Biological Phenomenon.Don Marquis - 2018 - Diametros 55:20-26.
    John Lizza says that to define death well, we must go beyond biological considerations. Death is the absence of life in an entity that was once alive. Biology is the study of life. Therefore, the definition of death should not involve non-biological concerns.
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