“Death, Deprivation, and Rational Regret”
Abstract: Is death a bad thing? According to the “deprivation account,” death is bad because the dead don’t get the various goods that they would have if only they were still alive. But it’s not normally a misfortune when a merely possible good doesn’t come your way. (Bill Gates didn’t write you a check for a million dollars today, but it would be silly to be upset about that.) So how can death actually be bad? We’ll explore a promising answer.
Shelly Kagan is the Clark Professor of Philosophy at Yale University.