Faring Well and Getting What You Want


Faring Well and Getting What You Want
After reading ”Faring Well and Getting What You Want” by Chris Heathwood, respond to the ifl
following questions concerning cultural relativism and subjectivism located at the end of the
8 chapter. Your response to each question should be 700 to 300 words in length. Heathwood claims
that the meaningfulness of a life can vary independently from how well off the person living it is. To
see whether you agree, try to describe an example of (a) a life that you think is meaningful that is
not beneficial to the person living it, and (b) a life that is beneficial to the person living it without
being a meaningful life. Suppose someone claims that being healthy is intrinsically good for us. Can
you think of a way to test whether this is true? Here is one idea: describe a pair of cases that are
DO) exactly alike except that in one of the cases, the person involved has greater health than in the
other case. It’s crucial that there be no other differences between the cases. What do you think this
tells us about the intrinsic value of being healthy? Do you agree that Charlie’s gains in freedom
turned out to be of no benefit to him? If they are of no benefit to him, is that enough to show that
objectivism about well-being is mistaken? If not, what more is required? What is an ideal desire as
opposed to an actual desire? Which kind of desire does Heathwood think is connected to welfare?
Why does he think this? Do you believe that Heathwood benefits when, unbeknownst to him, his
exiled uncle achieves happiness and health? Why or why not? According to one version of the desire

theory of welfare, a person is benefited just when a desire that is about her own life is satisfied. Is
this theory plausible? Explain. Heathwood thinks that our life is a good life for us to the extent that
we get what we want, so long as we are aware of it and so long as this is a want in the ‘genuine 5
attraction”sense of “want.”Are there any cases in which your life goes better for you even though
no such want is satisfied? Are there any cases in which such wants are satisfied, but one fails to be
benefited as a result?