On luck, Responsibility and the meaning of life

Berit Brogaard, Barry Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A meaningful life, we shall argue, is a life upon which a certain sort of valuable pattern has been imposed by the person in question—a pattern which involves in serious ways the person having an effect upon the world. Meaningfulness is thus a special kind of value which a human life can bear. Two interrelated difficulties face ths proposal. One concerns responsiblity: how are we to account for the fact that a life that satisfies the above criteria can have more meaning than a life with the same positive outcomes but which lacks responsiblity on the part of the agent? The other turns on these outcomes themselves: how can the meaningfulness engendered by actions you perform now be affected by what those actions go on to produce in the future, perhaps even after your death? We provide a response to both of these difficulties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)443-458
Number of pages16
JournalPhilosophical Papers
Volume34
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Luck
Meaning of Life
Responsibility
Meaningfulness
Person
Human Life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy

Cite this

On luck, Responsibility and the meaning of life. / Brogaard, Berit; Smith, Barry.

In: Philosophical Papers, Vol. 34, No. 3, 2005, p. 443-458.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Brogaard, Berit ; Smith, Barry. / On luck, Responsibility and the meaning of life. In: Philosophical Papers. 2005 ; Vol. 34, No. 3. pp. 443-458.
@article{9bf88a47c5d64207a313f3cd481f82fd,
title = "On luck, Responsibility and the meaning of life",
abstract = "A meaningful life, we shall argue, is a life upon which a certain sort of valuable pattern has been imposed by the person in question—a pattern which involves in serious ways the person having an effect upon the world. Meaningfulness is thus a special kind of value which a human life can bear. Two interrelated difficulties face ths proposal. One concerns responsiblity: how are we to account for the fact that a life that satisfies the above criteria can have more meaning than a life with the same positive outcomes but which lacks responsiblity on the part of the agent? The other turns on these outcomes themselves: how can the meaningfulness engendered by actions you perform now be affected by what those actions go on to produce in the future, perhaps even after your death? We provide a response to both of these difficulties.",
author = "Berit Brogaard and Barry Smith",
year = "2005",
doi = "10.1080/05568640509485167",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "34",
pages = "443--458",
journal = "Philosophical Papers",
issn = "0556-8641",
publisher = "Taylor and Francis Ltd.",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - On luck, Responsibility and the meaning of life

AU - Brogaard, Berit

AU - Smith, Barry

PY - 2005

Y1 - 2005

N2 - A meaningful life, we shall argue, is a life upon which a certain sort of valuable pattern has been imposed by the person in question—a pattern which involves in serious ways the person having an effect upon the world. Meaningfulness is thus a special kind of value which a human life can bear. Two interrelated difficulties face ths proposal. One concerns responsiblity: how are we to account for the fact that a life that satisfies the above criteria can have more meaning than a life with the same positive outcomes but which lacks responsiblity on the part of the agent? The other turns on these outcomes themselves: how can the meaningfulness engendered by actions you perform now be affected by what those actions go on to produce in the future, perhaps even after your death? We provide a response to both of these difficulties.

AB - A meaningful life, we shall argue, is a life upon which a certain sort of valuable pattern has been imposed by the person in question—a pattern which involves in serious ways the person having an effect upon the world. Meaningfulness is thus a special kind of value which a human life can bear. Two interrelated difficulties face ths proposal. One concerns responsiblity: how are we to account for the fact that a life that satisfies the above criteria can have more meaning than a life with the same positive outcomes but which lacks responsiblity on the part of the agent? The other turns on these outcomes themselves: how can the meaningfulness engendered by actions you perform now be affected by what those actions go on to produce in the future, perhaps even after your death? We provide a response to both of these difficulties.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85016681614&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85016681614&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1080/05568640509485167

DO - 10.1080/05568640509485167

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:85016681614

VL - 34

SP - 443

EP - 458

JO - Philosophical Papers

JF - Philosophical Papers

SN - 0556-8641

IS - 3

ER -