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Good Life, The


Johan Bränmark


Pages 237 - 240



The question of wherein lies the good life, wellbeing, welfare, happiness, or eudaimonia has been at the centre of moral philosophy since antiquity. These notions might be defined to mean different things, but there is no consensus in the literature on anything but the fact that they are at least closely related. A notion like ‘happiness’ has a subjective ring and might sometimes refer to something like a feeling, but when philosophers study the matter, irrespective of whether they do so in terms of ‘happiness’ or some other notion, they tend to be concerned with how well a person’s life is going prudentially, i.e., for the sake of the person leading the life.




1Department of Global Political Studies, Malmö University



1 Aristotle, (1999), Nicomachean Ethics, tr. T. H. Irwin, Indianapolis: Hackett.

2 Bradley, F. H., (1927), Ethical Studies, 2nd Ed., Oxford: Clarendon Press.

3 Brännmark, J., (2003), “Leading Lives: Happiness and Narrative Meaning”, Philosophical Papers 32: 321-43.

4 Chappell, T. D. J., (1998), Understanding Human Goods, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

5 Griffin, J., (1986), Well-Being: Its Meaning, Measurement, and Moral Importance, Oxford: Clarendon Press.

6 Irwin, T. H., (1999), “Permanent Happiness: Aristotle and Solon”, in Sherman, N. (ed.), Aristotle’s Ethics: Critical Essays, Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 1-33. Kagan, S., 1994, “Me and my Life”, Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 94: 309-324.

7 Nussbaum, M. C., (1993), “Non-Relative Virtues: An Aristotelian Approach”, in Nussbaum, M. C.; Sen, A. (eds.), The Quality of Life, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 242-269.

8 Slote, M., (1983), Goods and Virtues, Oxford: Clarendon Press.

9 Velleman, J. D., (1991), “Well-Being and Time”, Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 72: 48-77.

10 Feldman, F., (2004), Pleasure and the Good Life, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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