Lecture 17 - The badness of death, Part II: The deprivation account

author: Shelly Kagan, Department of Philosophy, Yale University
recorded by: Yale University
published: Feb. 12, 2010,   recorded: March 2007,   views: 3765
released under terms of: Creative Commons Attribution No Derivatives (CC-BY-ND)

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This lecture continues to explore the issue of why death may be bad. According to the deprivation account, what is bad about death is the fact that because one ceases to exist, one becomes deprived of the good things in life. Being dead is not intrinsically bad; it is comparatively bad and one is worse off only by virtue of not being able to enjoy the things one enjoyed while alive, such as watching the sunset, listening to music, and discussing philosophy.

Reading assignment:

Nagel, Thomas. "Death." In Mortal Questions. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1979. pp. 1-10

Feldman, Fred. "Some Puzzles About the Evil of Death." The Philosophy Review 100, no. 2, (April 1991), pp. 205-227


Figures 17.1-17.3 [PDF]

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