An Obligation to Enhance?

Topoi 38 (1):49-52 (2019)
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Abstract

This article discusses some rather formal characteristics of possible obligations to enhance. Obligations to enhance can exist in the absence of good moral reasons. If obligation and duty however are considered as synonyms, the enhancement involved must be morally desirable in some respect. Since enhancers and enhanced can, but need not coincide, advertency is appropriate regarding the question who exactly is addressed by an obligation or a duty to enhance: the person on whom the enhancing treatment is performed, or the controller or the operator of the enhancement. Especially, the position of the operator is easily overlooked. The exact functionality of the specific enhancement, is all-important, not only for the acceptability of a specific form of enhancement, but also for its chances of success for becoming a duty or morally obligatory. Finally and most importantly, however, since obligations can exist without good moral reasons, there can be obligations to enhance that are not morally right, let alone desirable.

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References found in this work

Moral enhancement.Thomas Douglas - 2008 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 25 (3):228-245.
Moral enhancement and pro-social behaviour.Sarah Chan & John Harris - 2011 - Journal of Medical Ethics 37 (3):130-131.
A Debate about Moral Enhancement.John Harris & Julian Savulescu - 2015 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 24 (1):8-22.

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