Against the Tedium of Immortality

Authors
Donald W. Bruckner
University of Pittsburgh (PhD)
Abstract
Abstract In a well-known paper, Bernard Williams argues that an immortal life would not be worth living, for it would necessarily become boring. I examine the implications for the boredom thesis of three human traits that have received insufficient attention in the literature on Williams? paper. First, human memory decays, so humans would be entertained and driven by things that they experienced long before but had forgotten. Second, even if memory does not decay to the extent necessary to ward off boredom, once-satisfied desires often return after a sufficient period of time. Eternity would always contain sufficient time for our desires to rejuvenate. Third, even if too many of our desires were satisfied but not yet rejuvenated, we can expect that human ingenuity would continue to invent new pursuits, pastimes, careers, and ways of life that would prevent us from becoming bored as we moved from one to another. Finally, I consider and respond to several objections, including the claims that as much variety as I propose to be put into an eternal life is inconsistent with having one character throughout one?s life and that the sort of character change and memory decay I postulate is inconsistent with personal identity
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/09672559.2012.713383
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 35,445
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford University Press.
A Theory of Justice.John Rawls - 2009 - In Steven M. Cahn (ed.), Philosophy and Rhetoric. Oxford University Press. pp. 133-135.
Life as Narrative.Bernard Williams - 2009 - European Journal of Philosophy 17 (2):305-314.

View all 19 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

God and Eternal Boredom.Vuko Andrić & Attila Tanyi - 2017 - Religious Studies 53 (1):51-70.
Immortality, Memory and Imagination.Christopher Belshaw - 2015 - The Journal of Ethics 19 (3-4):323-348.
Does Death Give Meaning to Life?Brooke Alan Trisel - 2015 - Journal of Philosophy of Life 5 (2):62-81.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP index
2012-10-23

Total downloads
95 ( #66,880 of 2,285,005 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
7 ( #65,404 of 2,285,005 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature