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Perry Hendricks [30]Perry C. Hendricks [1]
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Perry Hendricks
Purdue University
  1. Even if the fetus is not a person, abortion is immoral: The impairment argument.Perry Hendricks - 2019 - Bioethics 33 (2):245-253.
    Much of the discussion surrounding the ethics of abortion has centered around the notion of personhood. This is because many philosophers hold that the morality of abortion is contingent on whether the fetus is a person - though, of course, some famous philosophers have rejected this thesis (e.g. Judith Thomson and Don Marquis). In this article, I construct a novel argument for the immorality of abortion based on the notion of impairment. This argument does not assume that the fetus is (...)
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  2. My body, not my choice: against legalised abortion.Perry Hendricks - 2022 - Journal of Medical Ethics 48 (7):456-460.
    It is often assumed that if the fetus is a person, then abortion should be illegal. Thomson1 laid the groundwork to challenge this assumption, and Boonin2 has recently argued that it is false: he argues that abortion should be legal even if the fetus is a person. In this article, I explain both Thomson’s and Boonin’s reason for thinking that abortion should be legal even if the fetus is a person. After this, I show that Thomson’s and Boonin’s argument for (...)
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  3. The Pregnancy Rescue Case: Why Abortion is Immoral.Perry Hendricks - forthcoming - Journal of Medical Ethics.
    In cases in which we must choose between either (i) preventing a woman from remaining unwillingly pregnant or (ii) preventing a fetus from being killed, we should prevent the fetus from being killed. But this suggests that in typical cases abortion is wrong: typical abortions involve preventing a woman from remaining unwillingly pregnant over preventing a fetus from being killed. So abortion is typically wrong—and this holds whether or not fetuses are persons.
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  4. (Regrettably) Abortion remains immoral: The impairment argument defended.Perry C. Hendricks - 2019 - Bioethics 33 (8):968-969.
    In my article "Even if the fetus is not a person, abortion is immoral: The impairment argument" (this journal), I defended what I called “The impairment argument” which purports to show that abortion is immoral. Bruce Blackshaw (2019) has argued that my argument fails on three accounts. In this article, I respond to his criticisms.
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  5. Strengthening the impairment argument against abortion.Bruce Blackshaw & Perry Hendricks - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics 47 (7):515-518.
    Perry Hendricks’ impairment argument for the immorality of abortion is based on two premises: first, impairing a fetus with fetal alcohol syndrome is immoral, and second, if impairing an organism to some degree is immoral, then ceteris paribus, impairing it to a higher degree is also immoral. He calls this the impairment principle. Since abortion impairs a fetus to a higher degree than FAS, it follows from these two premises that abortion is immoral. Critics have focussed on the ceteris paribus (...)
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  6. Sceptical theism and the evil-god challenge.Perry Hendricks - 2018 - Religious Studies 54 (4):549-561.
    This article is a response to Stephen Law's article ‘The evil-god challenge’. In his article, Law argues that if belief in evil-god is unreasonable, then belief in good-god is unreasonable; that the antecedent is true; and hence so is the consequent. In this article, I show that Law's affirmation of the antecedent is predicated on the problem of good (i.e. the problem of whether an all-evil, all-powerful, and all-knowing God would allow there to be as much good in the world (...)
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  7. Fine-Tuning the Impairment Argument.Bruce Blackshaw & Perry Hendricks - 2021 - Journal of Medical Ethics 47 (9):641-642.
    Perry Hendricks’ original impairment argument for the immorality of abortion is based on the impairment principle (TIP): if impairing an organism to some degree is immoral, then ceteris paribus, impairing it to a higher degree is also immoral. Since abortion impairs a fetus to a higher degree than fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and giving a fetus FAS is immoral, it follows that abortion is immoral. Critics have argued that the ceteris paribus is not met for FAS and abortion, and so (...)
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  8. Skeptical Theism Proved.Perry Hendricks - 2020 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 6 (2):264-274.
    Skeptical theism is a popular response to arguments from evil. Many hold that it undermines a key inference often used by such arguments. However, the case for skeptical theism is often kept at an intuitive level: no one has offered an explicit argument for the truth of skeptical theism. In this article, I aim to remedy this situation: I construct an explicit, rigorous argument for the truth of skeptical theism.
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  9. Abortion Restrictions are Good for Black Women.Perry Hendricks - forthcoming - The New Bioethics.
    Abortion restrictions are particularly good for black women—at least in the United States. This claim will likely strike many as outlandish. And numerous commentaries on abortion restrictions have suggested otherwise: many authors have lamented the effects of abortion restrictions on women, and black women in particular—these restrictions are bad for them, these authors say. However, abortion restrictions are clearly good for black women. This is because if someone is prevented from performing a morally wrong action, it’s good for her. For (...)
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  10. The Impairment Argument Against Abortion.Perry Hendricks - 2022 - In Nicholas Colgrove, Bruce P. Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger (eds.), Agency, Pregnancy, and Persons: Essays in Defense of Human Life.
    I provide an updated version of The Impairment Argument against abortion and respond to numerous objections that can be (and have been) raised to it.
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  11. We are not in the Dark: Refuting Popular Arguments Against Skeptical Theism.Perry Hendricks - 2021 - American Philosophical Quarterly 58 (2):125-134.
    Critics of skeptical theism often claim that if it (skeptical theism) is true, then we are in the dark about whether (or for all we know) there is a morally justifying for God to radically deceive us. From here, it is argued that radical skepticism follows: if we are truly in the dark about whether there is a morally justifying reason for God to radically deceive us, then we cannot know anything. In this article, I show that skeptical theism does (...)
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  12. Skeptical Theism Unscathed: Why Skeptical Objections to Skeptical Theism Fail.Perry Hendricks - 2019 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 101 (1):43-73.
    Arguments from evil purport to show that some fact about evil makes it (at least) probable that God does not exist. Skeptical theism is held to undermine many versions of the argument from evil: it is thought to undermine a crucial inference that such arguments often rely on. Skeptical objections to skeptical theism claim that it (skeptical theism) entails an excessive amount of skepticism, and therefore should be rejected. In this article, I show that skeptical objections to skeptical theism have (...)
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  13. Why the embryo rescue case is a bad argument against embryonic personhood.Perry Hendricks - 2019 - Bioethics 33 (6):669-673.
    The “Embryo Rescue Case” (ERC) refers to a thought experiment that is used to argue against the view that embryos have a right to life (i.e. are persons). I will argue that cognitive science undermines the intuition elicited by the ERC; I will show that whether or not embryos have a right to life, our mental tools will make it very difficult to believe that embryos have said right. This suggests that the intuition elicited by the ERC is not truth (...)
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  14. There is no right to the death of the fetus.Perry Hendricks - 2018 - Bioethics (6):1-3.
    Joona Räsänen, in his article ‘Ectogenesis, abortion and a right to the death of the fetus’, has argued for the view that parents have a right to the death of the fetus. In this article, I will explicate the three arguments Räsänen defends, and show that two of them have false or unmotivated premises and hence fail, and that the support he offers for his third argument is inconsistent with other views he expresses in his article. Therefore, I conclude that (...)
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  15. How To Be a Skeptical Theist and a Commonsense Epistemologist.Perry Hendricks - 2018 - Faith and Philosophy 35 (3):345-355.
    Trent Dougherty has argued that commonsense epistemology and skeptical theism are incompatible. In this paper, I explicate Dougherty’s argument, and show that (at least) one popular form of skeptical theism is compatible with commonsense epistemology.
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  16. Divine hiddenness or de jure objections to theism: You cannot have both.Perry Hendricks - 2021 - Analysis 81 (1):27-32.
    De facto objections to theism purport to show that theism is false, whereas de jure objections to theism claim that, whether or not theism is true, belief in God is irrational. Divine hiddenness – the fact that there are people who non-resistantly lack belief in God – is sometimes used as an argument against theism. In this article I will show that accepting the argument from divine hiddenness carries a high cost: it eliminates all de jure objections to theism. So (...)
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  17. Causal Connections, Logical Connections, and Skeptical Theism: There Is No Logical Problem of Evil.Perry Hendricks - forthcoming - Religions.
    In this paper, I consider Sterba’s recent criticism of skeptical theism in context of his argument from evil. I show that Sterba’s criticism of skeptical theism shares an undesirable trait with all past criticisms of skeptical theism: it fails. This is largely due to his focus on causal connections and his neglect of logical connections. Because of this, his argument remains vulnerable to skeptical theism.
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  18. Undermining the axiological solution to divine hiddenness.Perry Hendricks & Kirk Lougheed - 2019 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 86 (1):3-15.
    Lougheed argues that a possible solution to the problem of divine hiddenness is that God hides in order to increase the axiological value of the world. In a world where God exists, the goods associated with theism necessarily obtain. But Lougheed also claims that in such a world it’s possible to experience the goods of atheism, even if they don’t actually obtain. This is what makes a world with a hidden God more valuable than a world where God is unhidden, (...)
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  19. Unauthorized Pelvic Exams are Sexual Assault.Perry Hendricks & Samantha Seybold - 2022 - The New Bioethics 28 (4):368-376.
    The pelvic exam is used to assess the health of female reproductive organs and so involves digital penetration by a physician. However, it is common practice for medical students to acquire experience in administering pelvic exams by performing them on unconscious patients without prior authorization. In this article, we argue that such unauthorized pelvic exams (UPEs) are sexual assault. Our argument is simple: in any other circumstance, unauthorized digital penetration amounts to sexual assault. Since there are no morally significant differences (...)
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  20. The Nature of Skeptical Theism: Answering Nonstandard Objections to Skeptical Theism.Perry Hendricks - 2019 - Philosophia Christi 21 (1):103-117.
    Skeptical theism is a popular response to arguments from evil. Recently, Matthew A. Benton, John Hawthorne, and Yoaav Isaacs have argued that the theses that ground skeptical theism are either false or limited in scope. In this article, I show that their objections rest on dubious assumptions about the nature of skeptical theism. Along the way, I develop and clarify the ambiguous parts of skeptical theism. The upshot of this is that—once the nature of skeptical theism is made clearer—it is (...)
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  21. Deontological Sceptical Theism Proved.Perry Hendricks - forthcoming - Religious Studies.
    In this article, I argue that sceptical theists have too narrow a focus: they consider only God’s axiological reasons, ignoring any non-axiological reasons he may have. But this is a mistake: predicting how God will act requires knowing about his reasons in general, and this requires knowing about both God’s axiological and non-axiological reasons. In light of this, I construct and defend a kind of sceptical theism—Deontological Sceptical Theism—that encompasses all of God’s reasons, and briefly illustrate how it renders irrelevant (...)
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  22. Response to Wunder: objective probability, non-contingent theism, and the EAAN.Perry Hendricks - 2018 - Religious Studies:1-5.
    This paper is a response to Tyler Wunder’s ‘The modality of theism and probabilistic natural theology: a tension in Alvin Plantinga's philosophy’ (this journal). In his article, Wunder argues that if the proponent of the Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism (EAAN) holds theism to be non-contingent and frames the argument in terms of objective probability, that the EAAN is either unsound or theism is necessarily false. I argue that a modest revision of the EAAN renders Wunder’s objection irrelevant, and that this (...)
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  23. The Subject’s Perspective Objection to Externalism and Why it Fails.Perry Hendricks - 2020 - Logos and Episteme 11 (3):323-331.
    The subject’s perspective objection (SPO) is an objection against externalist theories of justification, warrant, and knowledge. In this article, I show that externalists can accommodate the SPO while remaining externalist. So, even if the SPO is successful, it does not motivate internalism, and the primary motivation for internalism has been lost. After this, I provide an explanation for why so many people find cases that motivate the SPO convincing.
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  24. Does the Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism Defeat God’s Beliefs?Tina Anderson & Perry Hendricks - 2020 - Sophia 59 (3):489-499.
    Alvin Plantinga has famously argued that the naturalist who accepts evolutionary theory has a defeater for all of her beliefs, including her belief in naturalism and evolution. Hence, he says, naturalism, when conjoined with evolution, is self defeating and cannot be rationally accepted. This is known as the evolutionary argument against naturalism (EAAN). However, Tyler Wunder (Religious Studies 51:391– 399, 2015) has recently shown that if the EAAN is framed in terms of objective probability and theism is assumed to be (...)
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  25.  67
    Axiarchism: How to Narrow the Gap Between Pro-Theism and Anti-Theism.Perry Hendricks - 2022 - In Kirk Lougheed (ed.), Value Beyond Monotheism: The Axiology of the Divine. New York: Routledge.. pp. 114-128..
    (Wide) pro-theism is the view that the world is better overall if theism is true. (Wide) anti-theism is the view that our world would be better overall if atheism is true. Arguments for pro-theism and anti-theism typically make use of traditional theism (the view that an omni-God exists) and generic atheism (the view that an omni-God doesn’t exist). In my view, when the debate between pro-theists and anti-theists makes use of traditional theism and generic atheism, pro-theism clearly comes out on (...)
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  26. How to Debunk Animism.Perry Hendricks - 2021 - Philosophia 50 (2):543-550.
    Tiddy Smith argues that common consent amongst geographically and historically isolated communities provides strong evidence for animism―the view that there are nature spirits. In this article, I argue that the problem of animistic hiddenness―the lack of widespread belief in nature spirits―is at least as strong evidence against animism that common consent is evidence for it, meaning that the evidence for animism that Smith provides is neutralized.
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  27. The Axiology of Abortion: Should We Hope Pro-Choicers or Pro-Lifers are Right?Perry Hendricks - forthcoming - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy.
    The ethics of abortion considers whether abortion is immoral. Pro-choice philosophers think that it is not immoral, while pro-life philosophers think that it is. The axiology of abortion considers whether world would be better if the pro-choice or pro-life position is right. While much attention has been given to the ethics of abortion, there has been no attention given to the axiology of abortion. In this article, I seek to change that. I consider various arguments for thinking our world would (...)
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  28. Skeptical Theism, Pro-Theism, and Anti-Theism.Perry Hendricks - 2020 - In Kirk Lougheed (ed.), Four Views on the Axiology of Theism: What Difference Does God Make? Bloomsbury Publishing. pp. 95-115.
    In this chapter, I consider personal and impersonal anti-theism and personal and impersonal pro-theism. I show that skeptical theism undermines arguments for personal anti-theism and impersonal anti-theism. Next, I show that (at least some) arguments for personal and impersonal pro-theism are not undermined by skeptical theism. This throws a wrench in debates about the axiology of theism: if skeptical theism is true, then it is very difficult to establish certain positions in answer to the axiological question about God.
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  29. The proper basicality of belief in God and the evil-god challenge.Perry Hendricks - forthcoming - Religious Studies:1-8.
    The evil-god challenge is a challenge for theists to show that belief in God is more reasonable than belief in evil-god. In this article, I show that whether or not evil-god exists, belief in evil-god is unjustified. But this isn’t the case for belief in God: belief in God is probably justified if theism is true. And hence belief in God is (significantly) more reasonable than belief in evil-god, and the evil-god challenge has been answered.
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  30.  24
    Corrigendum to: Divine hiddenness or de jure objections to theism: you cannot have both.Perry Hendricks - 2021 - Analysis 81 (1):82-82.
    Analysis 81 : 27–32. doi: _ 10.1093/analys/anaa043 _.
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  31.  26
    Skeptical Theism.Perry Hendricks - 2023 - Springer Nature Switzerland.
    Is evil evidence against the existence of God? Does divine hiddenness provide an evidential problem for theism? Is our evolutionary history evidence that God doesn’t exist? Skeptical theism is the view that humans are cognitively limited in important ways that prevent us from providing affirmative answers to these evidential questions. In this book—the first monograph published on skeptical theism—Perry Hendricks gives careful, novel, and compelling arguments in favor of skeptical theism and provides a comprehensive defense of it, addressing all major (...)
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