David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophical Studies 162 (3):473-497 (2013)
Several authors have speculated that (1) the pharmaceutical, genetic or other technological enhancement of human mental capacities could result in the creation of beings with greater moral status than persons, and (2) the creation of such beings would harm ordinary, unenhanced humans, perhaps by reducing their immunity to permissible harm. These claims have been taken to ground moral objections to the unrestrained pursuit of human enhancement. In recent work, Allen Buchanan responds to these objections by questioning both (1) and (2). I argue that Buchanan’s response fails. However, I then outline an alternative response. This response starts from the thought that, though moral status-increasing human enhancements might render ordinary, unenhanced humans less immune to permissible harm, they need not worsen the overall distribution of this immunity across beings. In the course of the argument I explore the relation between mental capacity and moral status and between moral status and immunity to permissible harm
|Keywords||Moral status Personal identity Inviolability Harm Partiality Cognitive enhancement Moral enhancement Human enhancement|
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Derek Parfit (1984). Reasons and Persons. Oxford University Press.
Stephen L. Darwall (2006). The Second-Person Standpoint: Morality, Respect, and Accountability. Harvard University Press.
Charles Taylor (1989). Sources of the Self: The Making of the Modern Identity. Harvard University Press.
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Citations of this work BETA
Joseph Lee (2016). Cochlear Implantation, Enhancements, Transhumanism and Posthumanism: Some Human Questions. Science and Engineering Ethics 22 (1):67-92.
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