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Derek Parfit and Your Future Self

What could be wrong with caring more about your future self than other future people?

The works of Derek Parfit (1942-2017) have had a profound influence on how philosophers understand rational decision-making, ethics, and personal identity. At the heart of Parfit's thinking are questions about how you should relate to your future self, and whether you should treat your future self any differently than other future people. So why does Parfit argue that it's wrong to place a special value on your own survival? What would it take to value others in the way that you value yourself? And how might we harness Parfit's insights to make the world a better place? Josh and Ray's present selves welcome back Parfit's former student David Edmonds, author of Parfit: A Philosopher and His Mission to Save Morality. Sunday, April 16 at 11 am.

Devon Strolovitch studied medieval Judeo-Portuguese manuscripts and earned a PhD in Linguistics from Cornell University before coming to KALW. He is the Senior Producer of Philosophy Talk, and since 2007 has hosted Fog City Blues, the weekly digest of Blues in the Bay Area and beyond.