Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/184692
Title:
REASON, WORTH, AND DESIRE: AN ESSAY ON THE MEANING OF LIFE.
Author:
STRUDLER, ALAN.
Issue Date:
1982
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
In this essay I defend a skeptical thesis about the meaning of life: I argue that a meaningful life is impossible. I begin by examining the attempts of several philosophers to dismiss questions of the possibility of a meaningful life as either senseless or having an affirmative answer so obvious that serious philosophical scrutiny is rendered pointless. These philosophers, I argue, offer no conclusive arguments. I proceed to consider some skeptical arguments about the meaning of life. Although these arguments are suggestive, I maintain that they are undeveloped at crucial points, and thus unconvincing. To defend my skeptical thesis, I develop an account of a necessary condition for a meaningful life. I argue that in order for a person to have a meaningful life, he must be engaged in some activity of sufficient importance so that failure in that activity would constitute a good reason for feeling a painful retrospective attitude which I call remorse. I argue that one is justified in feeling remorse, in my sense, only when one fails in the attempt to realize some desire for a categorical good, that is, a desire for something which is good independently of how one happens to feel about it. I argue that we lack good reason for thinking that such justification exists. It follows that we lack good reason for feeling what I call remorse and thus for believing we might have a meaningful life.
Type:
text; Dissertation-Reproduction (electronic)
Keywords:
Meaning (Philosophy); Absurd (Philosophy); Life.; Values.
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Philosophy; Graduate College
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoenen_US
dc.titleREASON, WORTH, AND DESIRE: AN ESSAY ON THE MEANING OF LIFE.en_US
dc.creatorSTRUDLER, ALAN.en_US
dc.contributor.authorSTRUDLER, ALAN.en_US
dc.date.issued1982en_US
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractIn this essay I defend a skeptical thesis about the meaning of life: I argue that a meaningful life is impossible. I begin by examining the attempts of several philosophers to dismiss questions of the possibility of a meaningful life as either senseless or having an affirmative answer so obvious that serious philosophical scrutiny is rendered pointless. These philosophers, I argue, offer no conclusive arguments. I proceed to consider some skeptical arguments about the meaning of life. Although these arguments are suggestive, I maintain that they are undeveloped at crucial points, and thus unconvincing. To defend my skeptical thesis, I develop an account of a necessary condition for a meaningful life. I argue that in order for a person to have a meaningful life, he must be engaged in some activity of sufficient importance so that failure in that activity would constitute a good reason for feeling a painful retrospective attitude which I call remorse. I argue that one is justified in feeling remorse, in my sense, only when one fails in the attempt to realize some desire for a categorical good, that is, a desire for something which is good independently of how one happens to feel about it. I argue that we lack good reason for thinking that such justification exists. It follows that we lack good reason for feeling what I call remorse and thus for believing we might have a meaningful life.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeDissertation-Reproduction (electronic)en_US
dc.subjectMeaning (Philosophy)en_US
dc.subjectAbsurd (Philosophy)en_US
dc.subjectLife.en_US
dc.subjectValues.en_US
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplinePhilosophyen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.identifier.proquest8227372en_US
dc.identifier.oclc682927457en_US
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