Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (6):491-492 (2015)

Julie Tannenbaum
Pomona College
This brief critique of Frances Kamm’s Bioethical Prescriptions (Oxford University Press, 2013) focuses on the phenomenon of philosophers taking on roles outside of academia, which Kamm discusses in chapter 24, “The Philosopher as Insider and Outsider: How to Advise, Compromise, and Criticize.” Kamm discusses various conflicts that can arise for philosophers who serve as advisors on governmental commissions. One goal many philosophers have in joining such commissions is (a) to promote the public good (p. 527), but this can come into conflict with (b) the goals and norms governing one as a philosopher, as well as with (c) the goals and norms governing philosophers qua advisors to the governmental commissions. Kamm’s view is that (c) has precedence, up to a point, over (a) and (b). Questions that I explore are (1) what are the norms constitutive of being a philosopher; (2) how do the norms constitutive of other roles philosophers enter into differ from those of advisors to commissioners; and (3) when and why do some of the norms and goals outlined by Kamm take precedence over others?
Keywords advising  normative conflict
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Reprint years 2015
DOI 10.1136/medethics-2014-102038
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References found in this work BETA

Two Concepts of Rules.John Rawls - 1955 - Philosophical Review 64 (1):3-32.
Bioethical Prescriptions.Frances M. Kamm - 2015 - Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (6):493-495.
Categorizing Goods.Julie Tannenbaum - 2010 - In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics. Vol 5. Oxford University Press.

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Bioethical Prescriptions.Frances M. Kamm - 2015 - Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (6):493-495.

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