Journal of Practical Ethics 2 (2):20-32 (2014)

Authors
Edward Skidelsky
University of Exeter
Abstract
Defenders of happiness surveys often claim that individuals are infallible judges of their own happiness. I argue that this claim is untrue. Happiness, like other emotions, has three features that make it vulnerable to introspective error: it is dispositional, it is intentional, and it is publically manifest. Other defenders of the survey method claim, more modestly, that individuals are in general reliable judges of their own happiness. I argue that this is probably true, but that it limits what happiness surveys might tell us, for the very claim that people are reliable judges of their own happiness implies that we already have a measure of how happy they are, independent of self-reports. Happiness surveys may help us extend and refine this prior measure, but they cannot, on pain of unintelligibility, supplant it altogether.
Keywords Happiness  Happiness Surveys
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
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

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Happiness.Dan Haybron - forthcoming - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Analytics

Added to PP index
2014-12-11

Total views
229 ( #35,918 of 2,348,621 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
21 ( #32,893 of 2,348,621 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes