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Gustaf Arrhenius [54]Gustaf Svante Henning Arrhenius [1]
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Gustaf Arrhenius
Stockholm University
  1. An Impossibility Theorem for Welfarist Axiologies.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2000 - Economics and Philosophy 16 (2):247-266.
    A search is under way for a theory that can accommodate our intuitions in population axiology. The object of this search has proved elusive. This is not surprising since, as we shall see, any welfarist axiology that satisfies three reasonable conditions implies at least one of three counter-intuitive conclusions. I shall start by pointing out the failures in three recent attempts to construct an acceptable population axiology. I shall then present an impossibility theorem and conclude with a short discussion of (...)
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  2.  62
    Value Superiority.Gustaf Arrhenius & Wlodek Rabinowicz - 2015 - In Iwao Hirose & Jonas Olson (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Value Theory. New York, USA: Oxford University Press USA. pp. 225-248.
    Suppose that A and B are two kinds of goods such that more of each is better than less. A is strongly superior to B if any amount of A is better than any amount of B. It is weakly superior to B if some amount of A is better than any amount of B. There are many examples of these relations in the literature, sometimes under the labels “higher goods” and “discontinuity.” The chapter gives a precise and generalized statement (...)
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  3. Population Ethics Under Risk.Gustaf Arrhenius & H. Orri Stefansson - 2020
    Population axiology concerns how to evaluate populations in terms of their moral goodness, that is, how to order populations by the relations “is better than” and “is as good as”. The task has been to find an adequate theory about the moral value of states of affairs where the number of people, the quality of their lives, and their identities may vary. So far, this field has largely ignored issues about uncertainty and the conditions that have been discussed mostly pertain (...)
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  4. The Value of Existence.Wlodek Rabinowicz & Gustaf Arrhenius - 2015 - In Iwao Hirose & Jonas Olson (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Value Theory. Oxford University Press USA. pp. 424-444.
    Can it be better or worse for a person to exist than not to exist at all? This old and challenging existential question has been raised anew in contemporary moral philosophy, mainly for two reasons. First, traditional “impersonal” ethical theories, such as utilitarianism, have counterintuitive implications in population ethics, for example, the repugnant conclusion. Second, it has seemed evident to many that an outcome can be better than another only if it is better for someone, and that only moral theories (...)
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  5. Future Generations: A Challenge for Moral Theory.Gustaf Arrhenius - manuscript
    FD-Diss., Uppsala: University Printers, 2000 (ix+225 pages).
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  6.  14
    The Repugnant Conclusion.Gustaf Arrhenius, Jesper Ryberg & Torbjörn Tännsjö - 2017 - In Edward N. Zalta (ed.), The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Metaphysics Research Lab, Stanford University.
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  7. Future Generations: A Challenge for Moral Theory.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2000 - Dissertation, Uppsala University
    For the last thirty years or so, there has been a search underway for a theory that can accommodate our intuitions in regard to moral duties to future generations. The object of this search has proved surprisingly elusive. The classical moral theories in the literature all have perplexing implications in this area. Classical Utilitarianism, for instance, implies that it could be better to expand a population even if everyone in the resulting population would be much worse off than in the (...)
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  8. Millian Superiorities.Gustaf Arrhenius & Wlodek Rabinowicz - 2005 - Utilitas 17 (2):127-146.
    Suppose one sets up a sequence of less and less valuable objects such that each object in the sequence is only marginally worse than its immediate predecessor. Could one in this way arrive at something that is dramatically inferior to the point of departure? It has been claimed that if there is a radical value difference between the objects at each end of the sequence, then at some point there must be a corresponding radical difference between the adjacent elements. The (...)
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  9.  95
    Superiority in Value.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2005 - Philosophical Studies 123 (1-2):97-114.
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  10.  46
    Does Climate Change Policy Depend Importantly on Population Ethics? Deflationary Responses to the Challenges of Population Ethics for Public Policy.Mark Budolfson, Gustaf Arrhenius & Dean Spears - forthcoming - Climate Change and Philosophy,.
  11.  98
    Population Ethics and Different‐Number‐Based Imprecision.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2016 - Theoria 82 (2):166-181.
    Recently, in his Rolf Schock Prize Lecture, Derek Parfit has suggested a novel way of avoiding the Repugnant Conclusion by introducing what he calls “imprecision” in value comparisons. He suggests that in a range of important cases, populations of different sizes are only imprecisely comparable. Parfit suggests that this feature of value comparisons opens up a way of avoiding the Repugnant Conclusion without implying other counterintuitive conclusions, and thus solves one of the major challenges in ethics. In this article, I (...)
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  12. The Repugnant Conclusion.Jesper Ryberg, Torbjörn Tännsjö & Gustaf Arrhenius - 2006 - The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Online; Last Accessed October 4:2006.
  13. The Impossibility of a Satisfactory Population Ethics.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2011 - In Hans Colonius & Ehtibar N. Dzhafarov (eds.), Descriptive and Normative Approaches to Human Behavior, Advanced Series on Mathematical Psychology. Singapore:
    Population axiology concerns how to evaluate populations in regard to their goodness, that is, how to order populations by the relations \is better than" and \is as good as". This eld has been riddled with para- doxes and impossibility results which seem to show that our considered beliefs are inconsistent in cases where the number of people and their welfare varies. All of these results have one thing in common, however. They all involve an adequacy condition that rules out Derek (...)
     
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  14. Can the Person Affecting Restriction Solve the Problems in Population Ethics?Gustaf Arrhenius - 2009 - In M. A. Roberts & D. T. Wasserman (eds.), Harming Future Persons. Springer Verlag. pp. 289--314.
    The person-affecting restriction, in its slogan form, states that an outcome can be better than another only if it is better for someone. It has a strong intuitive appeal and several theorists have suggested that it avoids certain counterintuitive implications in population ethics. At the same time, the restriction has highly counterintuitive implications and yields non-transitive orderings in some nonidentity cases. Many theorists have taken this criticism to be decisive. Recently, however, there have been some reformulations of the restriction, suggesting (...)
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  15.  6
    Population Ethics and Different-Number-Based Imprecision.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2016 - Theoria 82 (2):166-181.
    Recently, in his Rolf Schock Prize Lecture, Derek Parfit has suggested a novel way of avoiding the Repugnant Conclusion by introducing what he calls “imprecision” in value comparisons. He suggests that in a range of important cases, populations of different sizes are only imprecisely comparable. Parfit suggests that this feature of value comparisons opens up a way of avoiding the Repugnant Conclusion without implying other counterintuitive conclusions, and thus solves one of the major challenges in ethics. In this article, I (...)
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  16. The Boundary Problem in Democratic Theory.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2005 - In Gustaf Arrhenius & Folke Tersman (eds.), Democracy Unbound: Basic Explorations. Stockholm: Stockholm University. Filosofiska institutionen. pp. 14-29.
     
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  17. Life Extension Versus Replacement.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2008 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 25 (3):211-227.
    It seems to be a widespread opinion that increasing the length of existing happy lives is better than creating new happy lives although the total welfare is the same in both cases, and that it may be better even when the total welfare is lower in the outcome with extended lives. I shall discuss two interesting suggestion that seems to support this idea, or so it has been argued. Firstly, the idea there is a positive level of wellbeing above which (...)
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  18. Value and Unacceptable Risk.Gustaf Arrhenius & Wlodek Rabinowicz - 2005 - Economics and Philosophy 21 (2):177-197.
    Consider a transitive value ordering of outcomes and lotteries on outcomes, which satisfies substitutivity of equivalents and obeys “continuity for easy cases,” i.e., allows compensating risks of small losses by chances of small improvements. Temkin (2001) has argued that such an ordering must also – rather counter-intuitively – allow chances of small improvements to compensate risks of huge losses. In this paper, we show that Temkin's argument is flawed but that a better proof is possible. However, it is more difficult (...)
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  19.  5
    Better to Be Than Not to Be?Wlodek Rabinowicz & Gustaf Arrhenius - 2010 - In Hans Joas & Barbro Klein (eds.), The Benefit of Broad Horizons: Intellectual and Institutional Preconditions for a Global Social Science. International comparative social studies (24). Brill. pp. 399-421.
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  20.  71
    One More Axiological Impossibility Theorem.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2009 - In Lars-Göran Johansson, Jan Österberg & Ryszard Sliwinski (eds.), Logic, Ethics and All That Jazz. Essays in Honour of Jordan Howard Sobel. Uppsala: Uppsala Philosophical Studies. pp. 23-37.
    Population axiology concerns how to evaluate populations in regard to their goodness, that is, how to order populations by the relations “is better than” and “is as good as”. This field has been riddled with impossibility results which seem to show that our considered beliefs are inconsistent in cases where the number of people and their welfare varies.1 All of these results have one thing in common, however. They all involve an adequacy condition that rules out Derek Parfit’s Repugnant Conclusion: (...)
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  21. The Paradoxes of Future Generations and Normative Theory.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2004 - In Torbjörn Tännsjö & Jesper Ryberg (eds.), The Repugnant Conclusion: Essays on Population Ethics. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 201-218.
    As the title of this paper indicates, I’m going to discuss what we ought to do in situations where our actions affect future generations. More specifically, I shall focus on the moral problems raised by cases where our actions affect who’s going to live, their number and their well being. I’ll start, however, with population axiology. Most discussion in population ethics has concentrated on how to evaluate populations in regard to their goodness, that is, how to order populations by the (...)
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  22. The Very Repugnant Conclusion.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2003 - In Krister Segerberg & Ryszard Sliwinski (eds.), Logic, Law, Morality: Thirteen Essays in Practical Philosophy in Honour of Lennart Åqvist. Uppsala. pp. 29-44.
    Population axiology concerns how to evaluate populations in regard to their goodness, that is, how to order populations by the relations “is better than” and “is as good as”. This field has been riddled with “paradoxes” which seem to show that our considered beliefs are inconsistent in cases where the number of people and their welfare varies. Already in Derek Parfit’s seminal contribution to the topic, an informal paradox — the Mere Addition Paradox — was presented and later contributions have (...)
     
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  23.  62
    Desert as Fit: An Axiomatic Analysis.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2006 - In Kris McDaniel, Jason R. Raibley, Richard Feldman & Michael E. Zimmerman (eds.), The Good, the Right, Life And Death: Essays in Honor of Fred Feldman. Aldershot: Ashgate Pub Co. pp. 3-17.
    Total Utilitarianism is the view that an action is right if and only if it maximizes the sum total of people’s well-being. A common objection to Total Utilitarianism is that it is insensitive to matters of distributive justice. For example, for a given amount of well-being, Total Utilitarianism is indifferent between an equal distribution and any unequal distribution, and if there would be a tiny gain in well-being by moving from an equal distribution to an unequal, we have a duty (...)
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  24. The Democratic Boundary Problem Reconsidered.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2018 - Ethics, Politics and Society: A Journal in Moral and Political Philosophy 2018 (1):89-122.
    Who should have a right to take part in which decisions in democratic decision making? This “boundary problem” is a central issue for democracy and is of both practical and theoretical import. If nothing else, all different notions of democracy have one thing in common: a reference to a community of individuals, “a people”, who takes decision in a democratic fashion. However, that a decision is made with a democratic decision method by a certain group of people doesn’t suffice for (...)
     
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  25. Future Generations and Interpersonal Compensations: Moral Aspects of Energy Use.Gustaf Arrhenius & Krister Bykvist - manuscript
    The long sweep of human history has involved a continuing interaction between peoples' efforts to improve their well-being and the environment's stability to sustain those efforts. Throughout most of that history, the interactions between human development and the environment have been relatively simple and local affairs. But the complexity and scale of those interactions are increasing. What were once local incidents of pollution shared throughout a common watershed or air basin now involve multile nations - witness the concerns for acid (...)
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  26. Feldman's Desert-Adjusted Utilitarianism and Population Ethics.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2003 - Utilitas 15 (2):225.
    Fred Feldman has proposed a desert-adjusted version of utilitarianism,, as a plausible population axiology. Among other things, he claims that justicism avoids Derek Parfit's. This paper explains the theory and tries to straighten out some of its ambiguities. Moreover, it is shown that it is not clear whether justicism avoids the repugnant conclusion and that it is has other counter-intuitive implications. It is concluded that justicism is not convincing as a population axiology.
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  27.  99
    The Person-Affecting Restriction, Comparativism, and the Moral Status of Potential People.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2003 - Ethical Perspectives 10 (3):185-195.
    Traditional ethical theories have paradoxical implications in regards to questions concerning procreation and our moral duties to future people. It has been suggested that the crux of the problem resides in an all too ‘impersonal’ axiology and that the problems of population axiology can be solved by adopting a ‘Person Affecting Restriction’ which in its slogan form states that an outcome can only be better than another if it is better for people. This move has been especially popular in the (...)
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  28.  91
    Egalitarianism and Population Change.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2009 - In Axel Gosseries & Lukas H. Meyer (eds.), Intergenerational Justice. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 325-349.
  29. Better to Be Than Not to Be?Gustaf Arrhenius & Wlodek Rabinowitz - 2010 - In Hans Joas (ed.), The Benefit of Broad Horizons: Intellectual and Institutional Preconditions for a Global Social Science: Festschrift for Bjorn Wittrock on the Occasion of His 65th Birthday. Brill. pp. 65 - 85.
    Can it be better or worse for a person to be than not to be, that is, can it be better or worse to exist than not to exist at all? This old 'existential question' has been raised anew in contemporary moral philosophy. There are roughly two reasons for this renewed interest. Firstly, traditional so-called “impersonal” ethical theories, such as utilitarianism, have counter-intuitive implications in regard to questions concerning procreation and our moral duties to future, not yet existing people. Secondly, (...)
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  30. The Moral Status of Potential People.Gustaf Arrhenius - manuscript
    It has been known for quite a while that traditional ethical theories have very counterintuitive and paradoxical implications for questions concerning procreation and our moral duties to future generations. Classical Utilitarianism, for example, seems to imply that we have a moral duty to procreate and that we should try to have as many off-springs as possible. More disturbingly, it implies Derek Parfit’s well-known Repugnant Conclusion.
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  31. Defining Democratic Decision Making.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2011 - In Frans Svensson & Rysiek Silwinski (eds.), Neither/Nor - Philosophical Papers Dedicated to Erik Carlson on the Occasion of His Fiftieth Birthday. Uppsala: Uppsala Philosophical Studies. pp. 13-29.
    In his Populist Democracy: A Defence (1993), Torbjörn Tännsjö suggests, roughly, the following necessary and sufficient conditions for a democratic collective choice: If the majority of a given group of voters prefer A to B, then the collective choice is A rather than B; and if the majority of voters had preferred B to A, then the collective choice would have been B rather than A. Moreover, the preference of a voter is equated with the one she is showing by (...)
     
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  32.  56
    Repugnant Conclusion.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2013 - In Hugh LaFollette (ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
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  33. Mutual Advantage Contractarianism and Future Generations.Gustaf Arrhenius - 1999 - Theoria 65 (1):25-35.
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  34.  20
    Better to Be Than Not to BE?Rabinowicz Wlodek, Gustaf Arrhenius & Joas Hans - 2010 - In Hans Joas (ed.), The Benefit of Broad Horizons: Intellectual and Institutional Preconditions for a Global Social Science: Festschrift for Bjorn Wittrock on the Occasion of His 65th Birthday. Leiden, Boston: Brill. pp. 399-421.
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  35.  11
    On Millian Discontinuities.Wlodek Rabinowicz & Gustaf Arrhenius - 2003 - In Wlodek Rabinowicz & Toni Ronnow-Rasmussen (eds.), Patterns of Value - Essays on Formal Axiology and Value Analysis. Lund: Lund University Department of Philosophy.
    Suppose one sets up a sequence of less-and-less valuable objects such that each object in the sequence is only marginally worse than its immediate predecessor. Could one in this way arrive at something that is dramatically inferior to the point of departure? It has been claimed that if there is a radical value difference between the objects at each end of the sequence, then at some point there must be a corresponding radical difference between the adjacent elements. The underlying picture (...)
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  36. An Impossibility Theorem in Population Axiology with Weak Ordering Assumptions.Gustaf Arrhenius - 1999 - In Ryszard Sliwinski (ed.), Philosophical crumbs. Essays dedicated to Ann-Mari Henschen-Dahlquist on the occasion of her seventy-fifth birthday. Uppsala: Uppsala philosophical studies. pp. 11-21.
  37. Meritarian Axiologies and Distributive Justice.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2007 - In Toni Ronnow-Rasmussen, Björn Petersson, Jonas Josefsson & Dan Egonsson (eds.), Hommage à Wlodek. Philosophical Papers Dedicated to Wlodek Rabinowicz. Stockholm: Stockholm University.
    Standard welfarist axiologies do not care who is given what share of the good. For example, giving Wlodek two apples and Ewa three is just as good as giving Wlodek three and Ewa two, or giving Wlodek five and Ewa zero. A common objection to such theories is that they are insensitive to matters of distributive justice. To meet this objection, one can adjust the axiology to take distributive concerns into account. One possibility is to turn to what I will (...)
     
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  38.  53
    What Österberg's Population Theory has in Common with Plato's.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2001 - In Erik Carlson & Ryszard Sliwinski (eds.), Omnium-gatherum. Philosophical Essays Dedicated to Jan Österberg on the Occastion of his Sixtieth Birthday. Uppsala: Uppsala Philosophical Studies. pp. 29-44.
    Jan Österberg is one of the pioneers in the field of population ethics. He started thinking about this issue already in the late 60s and he has developed one of the most original and interesting population axiologies.1 I’ve discussed the problems and drawbacks of Österberg’s theory elsewhere, and I don’t think that this is the place and time to discuss them again.2 Rather, I shall show that Österberg’s theory has a feature in common with the population axiologies of such luminaries (...)
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  39.  33
    Recognition of Reviewers.Katy Abramson, Elizabeth S. Anderson, Erik A. Anderson, Chris Armstrong, Barbara Arneil, Richard Arneson, Gustaf Arrhenius, Marcus Arvan, Elizabeth Ashford & Michael Bacon - 2013 - Journal of Social Philosophy 44 (4):309-312.
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  40.  18
    Recognition of Reviewers.Lucy Allais, Anita Allen, Andrew Altman, Elizabeth S. Anderson, Erik A. Anderson, David Archard, Faith Armitage, Barbara Arneil, Gustaf Arrhenius & Marcus Arvan - 2012 - Journal of Social Philosophy 43 (4):363-366.
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  41.  27
    Recognition of Reviewers.Anita Allen, Andrew Altman, Erik A. Anderson, David Archard, Faith Armitage, Gustaf Arrhenius, Marcus Arvan, Michael Bacon, Daniel Bar-Tal & Paul Benson - 2010 - Journal of Social Philosophy 41 (4):399-402.
  42. Democracy Unbound: Basic Explorations.Gustaf Arrhenius & Folke Tersman (eds.) - 2005 - Stockholm University. Filosofiska institutionen.
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  43. Etica delle popolazioni e metaetica.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2012 - Iride: Filosofia e Discussione Pubblica 25 (1):35-44.
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  44. Life Extension, Replacement, and Comparativism.Gustaf Arrhenius - manuscript
    It has been claimed that increasing the length of existing lives with positive welfare is better than creating new lives with positive welfare although the total sum of well-being is the same in both cases, or less in the outcome with extended lives. I shall discuss an interesting suggestion --- that it makes an outcome worse if people are worse off than they otherwise could have been --- that seem to support this idea. I call this view Comparativism.
     
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  45. Life Extension Versus Replacement in Enhancing Human Capacities.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2011 - In Julian Savulescu, Ruud ter Meulen & Guy Kahane (eds.), Enhancing Human Capabilites. Oxford, Storbritannien: pp. 368-385.
    It seems to be a widespread opinion that increasing the length of existing happy lives is better than creating new happy lives although the total welfare is the same in both cases, and that it may be better even when the total welfare is lower in the outcome with extended lives. I shall discuss two interesting suggestions that seem to support this idea. Firstly, the idea there is a positive level of well-being above which a life has to reach to (...)
     
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  46.  27
    Litteraturkurs II: Demokrati.Gustaf Arrhenius - manuscript
    Hemtentorna är nu rättade och finns att hämta på expeditionen. Man kan diskutera hemtentorna och resultaten med mig den 16/5 kl. 11 – hör i så fall av dig via elposten. Magisterstudenter och doktorander får sitt resultat efter den muntliga tentamen. Resultat på kursen.
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  47.  75
    Population Ethics and Metaethics.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2012 - Iride: Filosofia e Discussione Pubblica 25 (1):35-44.
    This paper focuses on the relations between population ethics and metaethics. Population ethics gives rise to well-known paradoxes, such as the paradox of mere addition. After presenting a version of this paradox, it is argued that a different way to dismantle it might be by considering it as a way to change our standard view of justification in moral theory. Two possible views are considered: a non-cognitivist approach to justification and to the explanation of inconsistency in morals; Parfit's suggestion that (...)
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  48. The Affirmative Answer to the Existential Question and the Person Affecting Restriction.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2015 - In Iwao Hirose & Andrew Reisner (eds.), Weighing and Reasoning: Themes from the Philosophy of John Broome. Oxford, Storbritannien: pp. 110-125.
  49. The Impossibility of a Satisfactory Population Ethics.Gustaf Arrhenius - 2011 - In Ehtibar N. Dzhafarov & Lacey Perry (eds.), Descriptive and Normative Approaches to Human Behavior. World Scientific Publishing Company. pp. 1–26.
    Population axiology concerns how to evaluate populations in regard to their goodness, that is, how to order populations by the relations “is better than ” and “is as good as”. This field has been riddled with paradoxes and impossibility results which seem to show that our considered beliefs are inconsistent in cases where the number of people and their welfare varies. All of these results have one thing in common, however. They all involve an adequacy condition that rules out Derek (...)
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  50. To the Editor of Theoria.Gustaf Arrhenius, Ingar Brinck, Kathrin Glüer-Pagin, Lena Halldenius, Anna-Sofia Maurin, Folke Tersman & Åsa Wikforss - 2011 - Theoria 77 (3):198-198.
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