Better than Nothing


Authors
Campbell Brown
London School of Economics
Abstract
A good life, or a life worth living, is a one that is "better than nothing". At least that is a common thought. But it is puzzling. What does "nothing" mean here? It cannot be a quantifier in the familiar sense, yet nor, it seems, can it be a referring term. To what could it refer? This paper aims to resolve the puzzle by examining a number of analyses of the concept of a life worth living. Temporal analyses, which exploit the temporal structure of lives, are distinguished from non-temporal ones. It is argued that the temporal analyses are better.
Keywords life worth living  population ethics
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