Umeå University's logo

umu.sePublications
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Well-being contextualism and capabilities
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
2024 (English)In: Journal of Happiness Studies, ISSN 1389-4978, E-ISSN 1573-7780, Vol. 25, no 1-2, article id 10Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Typically, philosophers analysing well-being’s nature maintain three claims. First, that well-being has essential properties. Second, that the concept of well-being circumscribes those properties. Third, that well-being theories should capture them exhaustively and exclusively. This predominant position is called well-being monism. In opposition, contextualists argue that no overarching concept of well-being referring to a universally applicable well-being standard exists. Such a standard would describe what is good, bad, and neutral, for us without qualification. Instead, well-being research is putatively about several central phenomena. If several phenomena are central, a proliferation of concurrently acceptable well-being theories and operationalisations is expected. However, contextualists are challenged to explain how those analysing well-being are not systematically talking past each other. In this paper, I address that challenge. The upshot is that contextualist well-being theories can be justifiably context-sensitive and applied to tailor-made policy-making efforts. I illustrate the benefits by connecting contextualism to the capability approach.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Science+Business Media B.V., 2024. Vol. 25, no 1-2, article id 10
Keywords [en]
Well-being, Contextualism, Monism, Pluralism, Capability approach
National Category
Philosophy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-207986DOI: 10.1007/s10902-024-00718-xISI: 001147638000003Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85182869763OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-207986DiVA, id: diva2:1755039
Note

Originally included in thesis in manuscript form. 

Available from: 2023-05-05 Created: 2023-05-05 Last updated: 2024-02-12Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Being well and doing good
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Being well and doing good
2023 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Vara väl och göra gott
Abstract [en]

This dissertation contains an introductory chapter and four articles. In section 1 of the introductory chapter, I provide an overview of my argument. In section 2, I do five things. First, I show that well-being is subject-relative, meaning that well-being is always present in a life if it is present at all. Second, I restrict the discussion to people as welfare subjects. Third, I describe the levels of generality that well-being theorising can take. Fourth, I show well-being’s relations to other values. Fifth, I describe the distinction between having or not having positive well-being and enduring ill-being. In section 3 of the introductory chapter, I outline the main philosophical well-being theories. I highlight their strengths and weaknesses, before moving on to section 4 where I describe the conceptual framework I use in my articles: the capability approach. The capability approach focuses on genuine opportunities, beings, and doings. The opportunities, beings, and doings can be specified in different contexts as needed. Hence, capabilitarian analyses focusing on different opportunities, beings and doings, are available. In my articles, I argue for four things regarding those well-being analyses. First, I argue that, and show how, expert opinions and public opinions can be reconciled in well-being policy-making situations. Second, I argue that, and show how, prudentially negative beings and doings should be assessed by analysing cases of homelessness. Third, I argue that the capability approach can be used to offer a complementary account to the predominant philosophical analyses of addiction which mainly focus on its descriptive nature. My complementary analysis highlights further targets for policy-making efforts. Fourth, I argue that well-being is context-sensitive. To that end, I bolster the capability approach by refining a view called contextualism. I defend this view against counterarguments and consequently both contextualism and the capability approach are made more viable.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå University, 2023. p. 47
Series
Umeå studies in philosophy, ISSN 1650-1748 ; 14
Keywords
well-being, ill-being, capability approach, monism, pluralism
National Category
Philosophy
Research subject
Ethics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-207989 (URN)978-91-8070-063-4 (ISBN)978-91-8070-064-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2023-06-09, Hörsal HUM.D.220 (Hörsal F), Umeå, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2023-05-17 Created: 2023-05-11 Last updated: 2023-05-11Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(968 kB)25 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 968 kBChecksum SHA-512
06b5e4bbfe4f867501ed52f9c3011f0379652633e07a3cd6f59986e215b39276b7756e08d6ee7a355c325223ebc3058d539323455f3bf11b0260abef3c8906b5
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Publisher's full textScopus

Authority records

Östlund, Sebastian

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Östlund, Sebastian
By organisation
Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies
In the same journal
Journal of Happiness Studies
Philosophy

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 25 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

doi
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
urn-nbn
Total: 83 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf