The moral significance of being born

Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (5):326-329 (2013)
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This paper is a response to Giubilini and Minerva's defence of infanticide. I argue that any account of moral worth or moral rights that depends on the intrinsic properties of individuals alone is committed to agreeing with Giubilini and Minerva that birth cannot by itself make a moral difference to the moral worth of the infant. However, I argue that moral worth need not depend on intrinsic properties alone. It might also depend on relational and social properties. I claim that the in principle availability of neonates to participate in scaffolded interactions with carers might plausibly be seen as contributing to their moral worth



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Neil Levy
Macquarie University

References found in this work

The Moral Significance of Birth.Mary Anne Warren - 1989 - Hypatia 4 (3):46 - 65.
The Moral Significance of Birth.José Luis Bermúdez - 1996 - Ethics 106 (2):378 - 403.
Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism.S. S. Sweet - 1984 - Telos: Critical Theory of the Contemporary 1984 (60):227-231.

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