Happiness, Morality, and Freedom

Series:

To be happy is to be emotionally and evaluatively satisfied with one’s life according to a standard of satisfaction one can claim as one’s own as a reasoning being. Since there is no definitive proof of what the standard of satisfaction is, being open to the devising and testing of standards by others is part of claiming one’s own standard as a reasoning being. This open-ness is equivalent to being open to and hence respecting and caring for the pursuit of happiness of others. Since such respect and care is what it is to be moral, it follows that one cannot be happy without being moral.

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Biographical Note

Arthur Melnick is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Illinois. He has published three books and numerous articles on Kant’s philosophy, a book on the nature of representation and a book on consciousness.

Review Quotes

"In this ambitious work in moral philosophy, Melnick (Univ. of Illinois) attempts to complete a Kantian project, convincing moral skeptics that it is in their own interest to be moral. Surprisingly, he accomplishes this by using a broadly eudaemonistic strategy with a very contemporary definition of happiness: happiness is one's final end and is endorsed contentment, which requires that one consider others’ ways of being happy." -J. D. Sands Wise, Georgetown College, CHOICE

Table of contents

Introduction
PART ONE- Happiness
Chapter 1- Happiness as Endorsed Contentment
Chapter 2- The Final Good and the Final End
Chapter 3- Reason and True Happiness
Chapter 4- The Happiness of Others
PART TWO- Morality
Chapter 5- The Fundamental Principle of Morality
Chapter 6- The Content of the Fundamental Principle
Chapter 7- Other Accounts of Morality
PART THREE- Freedom
Chapter 8- Freedom, Deliberation and the Self
Chapter 9- Freedom, Ultimate Power and Ultimate Responsibility
Bibliography

Readership

Philosophers specializing in contemporary issues in ethics, Kant’s ethics, Aristotle’s ethics, and issues over free will and responsibility.

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