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Chapter 4

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  • 1. Chapter Four: Value and the Quest for the Good What sort of things are valuable? Convenience Machine example
  • 2. Intrinsic and Instrumental Value
    • Intrinsic goods: good because of their nature and are not derived from other goods
    • Instrumental goods: worthy of desire because they are effective means of attaining our intrinsic goods
  • 3. The Value of Pleasure Hedonism: The doctrine that holds that all pleasure is good, that pleasure is the only thing good in itself, and that all other goodness is derived from this value. Hedonism comes from the Greek word hedon , which means pleasure.
  • 4. Hedonists Subdivide into Two Categories
    • Sensualism: the view that equates all pleasure with sensual enjoyment
    • Satisfactionism: the view that equates all
    • pleasure with satisfaction or enjoyment,
    • which may not involve sensuality.
  • 5. Nonhedonists Are divided into two separate groups: 1. Monists: Believe that there is a single intrinsic value, but it is not pleasure. 2. Pluralists: Admit that pleasure is an intrinsic good, but that there are other intrinsic goods as well.
  • 6. Are Values Objective or Subjective? Objectivist View: Values are worthy of desire whether or not anyone actually desires them. Values exist independently. Subjectivist View: Values are dependent on desirers and are relative to desirers.
  • 7. Relation of Value to Morality
    • Value Theory is at the heart of Moral Theory.
    • From our values we derive principles.
    • We judge which principle to use, then decide what to do.
    • Weakness of will: meaning to do the right thing, but being too morally weak to accomplish the task.
  • 8. The Good Life
    • Aristotle (384-322 BCE) believed that all people seek happiness.
    • Eudaimonia: not merely a subjective state of pleasure or contentment, but the kind of life we would all want to live if we understood our essential nature.
  • 9. The Good Life
    • John Rawls' “plan of life” conception of happiness:
      • There is a plurality of life plans open to each person, and what is important is that the plan be an integrated whole, freely chosen by the person and that the person be successful in realizing his or her goals
  • 10. The Good Life
    • Missing ingredients from the Happiness Machine necessary for the happy life:
      • Action
      • Freedom
      • Character
      • Relationships
  • 11. The Good Life
    • Moderate objectivism view of happiness:
      • Happiness is life in which there exists free action (including meaningful work), loving relations, and moral character and in which the individual is not plagued by guilt and anxiety bit is blessed with peace and satisfaction.