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Consequentialism about Meaning in Life

Utilitas 27 (4):445-459 (2015)

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  1. Meaningfulness as Sensefulness.Joshua Lewis Thomas - forthcoming - Philosophia.
    It is only in the last few decades that analytic philosophers in particular have begun to pay any serious attention to the topic of life’s meaning. Such philosophers, however, do not usually attempt to answer or analyse the traditional question ‘What is the meaning of life?’, but rather the subtly different question ‘What makes a life meaningful?’ and it is generally assumed that the latter can be discussed independently of the former. Nevertheless, this paper will argue that the two questions (...)
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  • Anti-Meaning and Why It Matters.Stephen M. Campbell & Sven Nyholm - 2015 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 1 (4): 694-711.
    It is widely recognized that lives and activities can be meaningful or meaningless, but few have appreciated that they can also be anti-meaningful. Anti-meaning is the polar opposite of meaning. Our purpose in this essay is to examine the nature and importance of this new and unfamiliar topic. In the first part, we sketch four theories of anti-meaning that correspond to leading theories of meaning. In the second part, we argue that anti-meaning has significance not only for our attempts to (...)
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  • La ricerca di un senso nella vita, la prospettiva morale e i limiti di una concezione sentimentalista.Stefano Bacin - 2017 - Etica E Politica 19 (2):287-304.
    I discuss Eugenio Lecaldano’s view of the search for meaning in life as presented in "Sul senso della vita" (Bologna, il Mulino, 2016), focusing on three issues. First, I suggest that an accurate account should accommodate both a prospective and a retrospective mode of the reflection on meaning in one’s own life. Second, I argue that Lecaldano’s distinction between meaningfulness and morality is underdetermined in two respects: (a) because a more flexible view of morality is able to integrate a consideration (...)
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  • Meaning in the Lives of Humans and Other Animals.Duncan Purves & Nicolas Delon - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (2):317-338.
    This paper argues that contemporary philosophical literature on meaning in life has important implications for the debate about our obligations to non-human animals. If animal lives can be meaningful, then practices including factory farming and animal research might be morally worse than ethicists have thought. We argue for two theses about meaning in life: that the best account of meaningful lives must take intentional action to be necessary for meaning—an individual’s life has meaning if and only if the individual acts (...)
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  • Objectivism, Hybridism, and Meaning in Life: Reply to Evers and van Smeden.Iddo Landau - 2017 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 55 (3):306-313.
    In a recent article in this journal, Daan Evers and Gerlinde Emma van Smeden () defend Wolf's hybridism against objectivist counterexamples advanced by Metz, Smuts, and Bramble. They also offer their own new hybridism, which they take to be even less vulnerable to such counterexamples. In this paper, I argue that Evers and van Smeden's defense of their and Wolf's hybridizing from objectivist counterexamples is problematic and that they do not, in fact, succeed in meeting the challenge the objectivist counterexamples (...)
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