Journal of Applied Philosophy 27 (2):140-153 (2010)
AbstractThe argument from potential has been hard to assess because the versions presented by friends and those presented by enemies have born very little resemblance to each other. I here try to improve this situation by attempting to bring both versions into enforced contact. To this end, I sketch a more detailed analysis of the modern concept of potential than any hitherto attempted. As one would expect, arguments from potential couched in terms of that notion are evident non-starters. I then ask how the modern notion of potential needs to be supplemented in order to produce a more convincing argument. I then enquire whether the supplementations utilised in the most distinguished recent presentations of the argument have anything better than an ad hoc role to play in contemporary metaphysics. I conclude that the rehabilitation of the argument is unlikely; in any event, the onus of proof seems to be on the friend of that argument to show that it is uncontrived. Finally, I argue that the (modern) notion of potential has an important role to play in any plausible account of foetal value
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Citations of this work
A Pluralist Account of the Basis of Moral Status.Giacomo Floris - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (6):1859-1877.
The Argument From Potentiality in the Embryo Protection Debate: Finally “Depotentialized”?Marco Stier & Bettina Schoene-Seifert - 2013 - American Journal of Bioethics 13 (1):19-27.
Are Adults and Children One Another’s Moral Equals?Giacomo Floris - forthcoming - The Journal of Ethics:1-20.
Mary Anne Warren and the Boundaries of the Moral Community.Timothy Furlan - 2022 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 31 (2):230-246.
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