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Contemplating ArtEssays in Aesthetics$
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Jerrold Levinson

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199206179

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199206179.001.0001

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Intrinsic Value and the Notion of a Life

Intrinsic Value and the Notion of a Life

(p.400) 24 Intrinsic Value and the Notion of a Life
Contemplating Art

Jerrold Levinson (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This essay explores the notion of intrinsic value. It is argued thata richly sentient life being a certain wayis the only possible subject of a defensible judgement of intrinsic value. One consequence of this thesis is a disagreement with G. E. Moore regarding the intrinsic value of a beautiful world devoid of sentience, a famous thought experiment from hisPrincipia Ethica. But a more important consequence is the underlining of an intimate connection between the notion of a richly sentient life and the very idea of intrinsic value.

Keywords:   theory of value, G. E. Moore, richly sentient life

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