By the time of his death, the US philosopher Herbert Fingarette (1921-2018) had lived what most would consider a full and meaningful life. His marriage to his wife, Leslie, was long and happy. His career as professor of philosophy at the University of California, Santa Barbara was both accomplished and controversial – his bookHeavy Drinking(1988), which challenged the popular understanding of alcoholism as a progressive disease, was met with criticism in the medical and academic communities. In a later book,Death: Philosophical Soundings(1999), Fingarette contemplated mortality, bringing him to a conclusion that echoed the Epicureans: in non-existence, there is nothing to fear. But asBeing 97makes evident, grappling with death can be quite different when the thoughts are personal rather than theoretical. Filmed during some of the final months of Fingarette’s life, the elegiac short documentary profiles the late philosopher as he reflects on life, loss, the many challenges of old age, and those lingering questions that might just be unanswerable. Via Aeon and ftrmgc.
Director: Andrew Hasse
Producer: Megan Brooks
This recalls to me reading On Mortality blog here: https://www.thendobetter.com/blog/2018/8/16/mortality-how-to-die-well
On how we die in today’s world.
It also recalls the life, death and question I posed to Bernie (a dying playmaker) in this blog:
“HOW DO YOU LIVE, A LIFE WELL LIVED?
IF YOU WOULD DO LIFE DIFFERENTLY - WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
WHAT WOULD YOU TELL YOUR 40-YEAR-OLD SELF?
IF THESE ARE THE BETTER DAYS OF AN EARLY NATION, WHAT SHOULD I DO?”