New PDF release: Aging, Death, and Human Longevity: A Philosophical Inquiry

By Christine Overall

ISBN-10: 0520232984

ISBN-13: 9780520232983

With the aid of medication and know-how we live longer than ever prior to. As human existence spans have elevated, the ethical and political matters surrounding toughness became extra advanced. may still we wish to reside so long as attainable? What are the social ramifications of longer lives? How does an extended existence span swap the best way we expect concerning the worth of our lives and approximately loss of life and demise? Christine total deals a transparent and clever dialogue of the philosophical and cultural matters surrounding this hard and infrequently emotionally charged factor. Her publication is exclusive in its finished presentation and overview of the arguments--both historical and contemporary--for and opposed to prolonging existence. It additionally proposes a revolutionary social coverage for responding to dramatic raises in lifestyles expectancy. Writing from a feminist viewpoint, total highlights the ways in which our biases approximately race, classification, and gender have affected our perspectives of aged humans and sturdiness, and her coverage strategies signify an attempt to beat those biases. She additionally covers the arguments surrounding the query of the "duty to die" and incorporates a provocative dialogue of immortality. After judiciously weighing the advantages and the hazards of prolonging human lifestyles, total persuasively concludes that the size of existence does topic and that its period could make a distinction to the standard and cost of our lives. Her booklet might be a necessary consultant as we think of our social obligations, the that means of human existence, and the clients of residing longer.

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Extra info for Aging, Death, and Human Longevity: A Philosophical Inquiry

Sample text

Illness and death occur in old age but are not confined to old age, and rates of illness and death may be aªected by many social factors in addition to age (Ruddick 1999, 48). Given the right forms of health care and social opportunities and support—entitlements that I believe belong to people of any age— old age need not be miserable, and the misery that some elderly people experience is not unique to old age. Furthermore, the view that “I’d rather be dead than a disabled old person” reflects tremendous ignorance about disability.

I am trying to respond primarily to the Epicurean and Lucretian pessimism about the lack of novelty in human experiences by arguing that the prospects for freshness in human experience are indefinitely large. Moreover, the desire for new endeavors or projects is not merely a wish to “consume” experiences. Such a description is inappropriate, for not just any experiences will do, and not all experiences are equal. ) In addition, although I am not saying that the sole meaning of life is the accrual of experiences, I do think that such experiences contribute to a meaningful life.

Peter Singer argues that extending human life significantly—for example, by seventy or eighty years—will inevitably lead to a lower average quality of life because “individuals will enjoy the freshness of youth for a comparatively small portion” of their total life span and because their average level of health will be not quite as good as the average level of health of those leading shorter lives. Moreover, the requirements of population control in the face of diminishing resources would demand that many fewer people be conceived and born.

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Aging, Death, and Human Longevity: A Philosophical Inquiry by Christine Overall

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