Happiness – A Feeling or a Future?

Wednesday, November 13, 2013 - 6:30pm

We all agree that happiness is something we want, even if there has never been much agreement about what makes us happy. But as Dr. Russell explains, there has also been an important shift in why we talk about happiness in the first place. When “happiness” comes up in discussion today, it’s usually because the discussion is about a feeling. In ancient Greek philosophy, however, “happiness” came up when the discussion was about a future—a practical discussion about what kind of life to give oneself and what kinds of things to live for. Since that discussion is as important today as it has ever been, Dr. Russell explores this ancient tradition in search of new directions for contemporary thought about the good lives we want for ourselves and for others.

About the Speaker
Daniel C. Russell
Daniel C. Russell
Center for the Philosophy of Freedom

Daniel C. Russell is a Professor of Philosophy in the Center for the Philosophy of Freedom at the University of Arizona, and the Percy Seymour Reader in Ancient History and Philosophy at Ormond College, University of Melbourne. His research focuses on ancient and contemporary thinking about good people and good lives. He is the author of Plato on Pleasure and the Good Life, Practical Intelligence and the Virtues, and Happiness for Humans, and the editor of The Cambridge Companion to Virtue Ethics. He is currently working on a new book, tentatively titled Justice: Cause and Effect.