How Much Better than Death Is Ordinary Human Survival?
AuthorLabukt, Ivar Russøy
According to common sense and a majority of philosophers, death can be bad for the person who dies. This is because it can deprive the dying person of life worth living. I accept that death can be bad in this way, but argue that most people greatly overestimate the magnitude of this form of badness. They do so because they significantly overestimate the goodness of what death deprives us of: ordinary human survival. I proceed by examining four philosophical theories of why human survival matters: (1) non-reductionism, (2) the psychological continuity view, (3) the continuity of consciousness view, and (4) the physical continuity view. I argue that all these theories fail to offer something that is both deeply egoistically important and found in ordinary human survival. In the final section, I discuss how we should think about preventing deaths from a policy perspective if death is a lesser personal evil than what is typically assumed.
PublisherOxford University Press
CitationLabukt IR: How Much Better than Death Is Ordinary Human Survival?. In: Gamlund E, Solberg CT. Saving People from the Harm of Death, 2019. Oxford University Press p. 243-254
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Copyright 2019 The Author(s)