Abstract

In this paper I argue for five theses. The first thesis is that ethicists should think about happiness and unhappiness together, with as much detail and particularity as possible. Thinking about unhappiness will help us get clear about happiness, and distinguish the different things that come under that name. The second is that happiness and unhappiness can both be important positively valuable features of a worthwhile life. The third thesis is that Modern Eudaimonism (ME), the claim that every reason to act is a reason either to promote or facilitate happiness, or to decrease or prevent unhappiness, is false. The fourth thesis is that Aristotle is not a Modern Eudaimonist. Aristotelian Eudaimonism (AE) says that every reason to act is a reason that derives from what Aristotle calls eudaimonia. But “derives from” is a different connective from “either to promote or facilitate X, or to decrease or prevent not-X”; and eudaimonia is not happiness. So AE ≠ ME. Finally, the fifth thesis is that AE is false too.

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Additional Information

ISSN
2154-154X
Print ISSN
0276-2080
Pages
pp. 27-52
Launched on MUSE
2015-02-13
Open Access
No
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