Peter Ohlin, philosophy editor at OUP USA, interviews philosopher David Benatar

Peter Ohlin: The title of the new book is The Human Predicament. How would you describe that predicament, in a nutshell? David Benatar: Life is hard. We have to struggle, often unsuccessfully, to
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Peter Ohlin: The title of the new book is The Human Predicament. How would you describe that predicament, in a nutshell? David Benatar: Life is hard. We have to struggle, often unsuccessfully, to keep unpleasantness at bay. It would be easier to make sense of this if life served some important purpose. Yet, while we can create some meaning, our lives lack any ultimate purpose. Death can relieve our suffering, but it cannot solve our problem of meaninglessness. Moreover, because death is annihilation, it is part of our misfortune (even when, all things considered, it is the lesser of two evils). In other words, our predicament is that life is bad but that death is too. PO: How did you become interested in this topic, and how does it connect with your previous book, Better Never to Have Been? DB: Apprehending our predicament commands one’s interest. To be aware of the suffering, the pointlessness of it all, and the grotesque finale seems unavoidably interesting – or, at least, it is to. . .

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News source: OUPblog » Philosophy

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