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Pessimism about the future

Abstract:

Many, probably most, people are optimists about the future, believing that the extinction of sentient life on earth would be, overall, bad. This paper suggests that pessimism about the future is no less reasonable than optimism. The argument rests on the possibility of ‘discontinuities’ in value, in particular the possibility that there may be some things so bad—such as agonizing torture—such that no amount of good can compensate for them. The ‘spectrum’ problem often raised in connection wit...

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Publication status:
Published
Peer review status:
Peer reviewed

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Publisher copy:
10.5840/msp202311139

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Institution:
University of Oxford
Division:
HUMS
Department:
Philosophy Faculty
Oxford college:
St Anne's College
Role:
Author
ORCID:
0000-0003-2521-2061
Publisher:
Wiley
Journal:
Midwest Studies in Philosophy More from this journal
Volume:
46
Pages:
373-385
Publication date:
2023-03-10
Acceptance date:
2023-01-14
DOI:
ISSN:
0363-6550
Language:
English
Keywords:
Pubs id:
1343639
Local pid:
pubs:1343639
Deposit date:
2023-05-22

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