Crisp PH reading week 3

That is surely a claim from which most of us will

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Unformatted text preview: g. And that is surely a claim from which most of us will recoil. What is the hedonist to say in response to such a powerful counter-example? The first is to ask how such examples fit —i 5* *" c 3 3 CD — ^ o § • ^ i nt o a b roade r m ora l e pistemology . S houl d w e j us t a ssum e tha t o u r h ostil e r eactio n t o t h e i de a o f t h e m achin e i s r eliable ? Wha t I w an t t o s ugges t i n t h e f ina l p ar t o f t hi s a rticl e i s t ha t w e s houldn't , f o r s evera l r easons : oo ^ (5 ^ c *_ J? ^ O • — 2? </> (D Qa *c ^ (1 ) A ccomplishin g t hing s t end s t o b e v er y e njoyabl e f o r huma n b eings . A t l eas t s om e o f t h e a ttractio n o f a c c omplishment , t hen , c a n b e e xplaine d b y a h edonist . ( 2 ) H edonis m i s , i n a w ay , ' paradoxical' . If I a ccep t h e donis m a n d t r y e xplicitl y a n d c ontinuall y t o p u t it i nt o p ractice , I s hal l a lmos t c ertainl y d o w ors e by hedonist standards t ha n w er e I t o f orge t a bou t m aximizin g m y o w n e njoymen t a n d j us t g e t i nvolve d w it h p layin g c hess , o r w hateve r it i s I e njoy . G ive n t ha t p eopl e a r e m otivate d b y t hei r b elief s a bou t w ha t t he y t hin k a d v ance s t hei r o w n w ell-being , a h edonis t c a n a rgu e t ha t t h e p ossessio n o f f als e b elief s — s uc h a s t h e b elie f t ha t a ccomplishmen t i s p ar t o f w ell-bein g — c a n i tsel f b e e xplaine d a n d p racticall y j ustifie d o n h edonisti c t erms . (3) Our values have evolved over the decades and indeed millennia. It is quite likely that our present values have been influenced to some extent by the attitudes of our hunter gatherer ancestors in the Stone Age, which in Europe, Asia and Africa ended as recently as about 4000 BCE. Those who accomplished more — that is, those who brought back more meat or fruit to their fellows — would have been rewarded with esteem and status within the group. Perhaps this is what those who want accomplishment are really seeking, and this might be enough to debunk the claim of accomplishment to being an independent value. (4) Imagine a life without enjoyment, but involving a great deal of accomplishment. Perhaps the person living the life is motivated by a sense of duty, but she doesn't from her own point of view care whether she accomplishes anything or not. Is it really plausible to say that her accomplishment makes her life better for herl A n d if it is s uggeste d that a ccomplishmen t has to be e njoyed to be worthwhile , w e might w an t to ask why. If a ccomplishmen t c a n a d d v alu e w he n it is e njoyed , wh y c an' t it a d d v alu e w he n it isn't? (5) W he n w e attempt an objective or external view on w ha t w e v alue , m uc h in o u r lives s eem s a bsurd . F ro m t h e point o f v ie w o f t h e u niverse , w h y s houl d m y m eagr e accomplishment s matter? (6) A ccomplishmen t involves doing things . But w h y should w e atta...
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This note was uploaded on 09/14/2013 for the course ECON 101 taught by Professor Drwang during the Fall '11 term at National Taiwan University.

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