Welcome to the second Journal of Moral Philosophy discussion here at PEA Soup. This is sure to be another insightful and productive discussion, this time on Preston Greene‘s absolutely fantastic paper “Value in Very Long Lives.” This paper is currently available in the “Advance Articles” section online at the Journal of Moral Philosophy. They have kindly provided free access to the paper, which can be viewed or downloaded here. Michael Cholbi has written a critical précis and commentary, which is included below. Please join the fun!
Michael Cholbi’s critical précis:
Longevity researcher Steven Austad has estimated that the average lifespan of “medically immortal” human beings —individuals invulnerable to aging, infectious disease, or endogenous diseases such as cancer but still vulnerable to death due to accidents, violence, etc. — would be just shy of 6,000 years. Should we welcome the prospect of medical immortality? Many actual human lives are no doubt made worse by death. For death often deprives us of goods that, had we lived longer, would have resulted in our lives being better overall. But some philosophers argue that it does not follow from the fact that many would benefit from living a bit longer that greatly extended lifespans would be better for us.