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Katja Vogt: A Well-Lived Human Life

When theorizers assess how people are doing, they often speak in terms of happiness or in terms of well-being. Neither of these appears ideal to me. In my work, I talk of a well-lived human life. This notion is inspired by ancient ethics and meets three criteria.

First, it is possible for someone to lead a good life even though, at certain moments, the person is not happy. Indeed, it may be impossible to be continually happy. At the same time, a life that is entirely without positive moods, feelings, emotions, and so on, does not seem to be a life that on the whole we would want—and as I argue in a moment, this matters. In aiming to lead a good life, we plausibly aim to live in ways that include positive experiences. (more…)

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Carol Graham: Why are black poor Americans more optimistic than white ones?

America has seen a dramatic increase in the number of so-called “deaths of despair”. Caused by opioid addiction, alcohol or drug overdose and suicide, these deaths have hit middle-aged white people without a college education particularly hard. The trend is extensive enough to have driven up the overall mortality rate, with the U.S. in the unusual position of being a rich country where life expectancy is falling rather than going up.

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New PEA Soup Series on Happiness and Wellbeing

Nicole Hassoun is initiating an exciting new continuing feature at PEA Soup: A series of posts on happiness and wellbeing. This blog series will be a part of the Minimally Good Life Project with is under the auspices of the Happiness & Well-Being Initiative (happinessandwellbeing.org) based at Saint Louis University. It hopes to explore such questions as: what is happiness, and how does happiness differ from well-being? And what does it mean to have a good life and how do we strive towards that goal? This series will involve regular posts on the topic of happiness from experts in and out of philosophy. She has lined up an amazing group of philosophers, including Connie Rosati, Dan Haybrun, Dick Arenson, Josh Knobe, Gwen Bradford, Rosa Terlazzo, Eden Lin, and herself. She also has a truly exciting lineup of academics outside of philosophy doing important work on the subject. The first post will be by Carol Graham, Leo Pasvolsky Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, on February 1.

Upcoming schedule of events:

Carol Graham- February 1

Katja Vogt- February 15th

Connie Rosati- February 22nd

Dan Haybron- March 1st

Eden Lin- March 8th

Richard Arnesson- March 15th

Josh Knobe and Jonathan Phillips- March 22nd

Rosa Terlazzo- April 12th

Lorraine Besser- May 3rd

Gwen Bradford- May 10th

Nicole Hassoun–TBD

David Sobel- TBD

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