The problem of 'thick in status, thin in content' in Beauchamp and Childress' principlism

Journal of Medical Ethics 36 (9):525-528 (2010)
Abstract
For many, Thomas Beauchamp and James Childress have elaborated moral reasoning by using the four principles whereby all substantive problems of medical ethics (and of ethics more generally) can be properly analysed and cogent philosophical solutions for the problems can be found. It seems that their ‘principlism’ gets updated, with better features being added during the course of the six editions of Principles of Biomedical Ethics. Nonetheless, Beauchamp and Childress seem to have been losing their way when it comes to the common-morality justification, which is the epistemological (and perhaps metaphysical) backbone of their method, and this is shown more vividly in their most recent (2009) edition of Principles of Biomedical Ethics. The author points out what he calls the problem of ‘thick in status, thin in content’ in principlism. The problem exists because principlism cannot adequately explain how the prescriptive sense of common morality it supports is consistent with the existence of what Beauchamp and Childress call the ‘legitimate moral diversity in the world’. Because of this problem, first, the practical end that principlism allegedly accomplishes (ie, providing practical moral guidelines in a relatively ‘thick’ content, based on common morality) is frustrated, and, second, principlism makes itself the method of common morality de jure and of moral pluralism de facto
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 10,316
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Similar books and articles
Matti Eklund (2011). What Are Thick Concepts? Canadian Journal of Philosophy 41 (1):25-49.
Richard B. Davis (1995). The Principlism Debate: A Critical Overview. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 20 (1):85-105.
Sunny Yang (2008). Moral Emotions and Thick Ethical Concepts. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 10:469-479.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2010-09-13

Total downloads

12 ( #120,937 of 1,096,449 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #231,754 of 1,096,449 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.