02 Feb 24. Suicide, Part I: The rationality of suicide
Death (PHIL 176)
This is the first of a series of lectures on suicide. Two very distinct contexts are presented in which the subject can be further explored. The first is rationality and the question of under what circumstances it makes sense to end one’s own life. The second is morality and the question of whether we can ever ethically justify resorting to suicide. The lecture’s focus is on the rational requirements of suicide, and Professor Kagan introduces a number of cases which demonstrate that ending one’s life, in certain instances, may be rationally sound.
00:00 – Chapter 1. Introduction to Suicide: Does it Make Sense? Distinguishing Issues of Rationality and Morality
05:14 – Chapter 2. When Is It Rational to Commit Suicide? Problems with the Two-State Requirement
17:11 – Chapter 3. Is Life Worth Having in the First Place? An Exploration of Intrinsic Value
28:51 – Chapter 4. Medical Complications: Rationale for Euthanasia
37:35 – Chapter 5. Suicide on a Positive-Negative Life Curve
Complete course materials are available at the Yale Online website: online.yale.edu
This course was recorded in Spring 2007.