The Open UniversitySkip to content

Hedonism and the experience machine

Barber, Alex (2011). Hedonism and the experience machine. Philosophical Papers, 40(2) pp. 257–278.

Full text available as:
PDF (Version of Record) - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Download (210Kb)
DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link:
Google Scholar: Look up in Google Scholar


Money isn’t everything, so what is? Many government leaders, social policy theorists, and members of the general public have a ready answer: happiness. This paper examines an opposing view due to Robert Nozick, which centres on his experience-machine thought experiment. Despite the example's influence among philosophers, the argument behind it is riddled with difficulties. Dropping the example allows us to re-version Nozick's argument in a way that makes it far more forceful - and less dependent on people's often divergent intutions about the experience machine.

Item Type: Journal Article
Copyright Holders: 2011 The Editorial Board, Philosophical Papers
ISSN: 0556-8641
Keywords: Robert Nozick, Experience Machine, Hedonism, Happiness
Academic Unit/Department: Arts > Philosophy
Item ID: 29075
Depositing User: Alexander Barber
Date Deposited: 20 Jul 2011 09:09
Last Modified: 23 Feb 2016 23:18
Share this page:


Scopus Citations

Actions (login may be required)

Policies | Disclaimer

© The Open University   + 44 (0)870 333 4340