David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (1):125-158 (2014)
The doctrine of double effect, together with other moral principles that appeal to the intentions of moral agents, has come under attack from many directions in recent years, as have a variety of rationales that have been given in favor of it. In this paper, our aim is to develop, defend, and provide a new theoretical rationale for a secular version of the doctrine. Following Quinn (1989), we distinguish between Harmful Direct Agency and Harmful Indirect Agency. We propose the following version of the doctrine: that in cases in which harm must come to some in order to achieve a good (and is the least costly of possible harms necessary), the agent foresees the harm, and all other things are equal, a stronger case is needed to justify Harmful Direct Agency than to justify Harmful Indirect Agency. We distinguish between two Kantian rationales that might be given for the doctrine, a “dependent right” rationale, defended by Quinn, and an “independent right” rationale, which we defend. We argue that the doctrine and the “independent right” rationale for it are not vulnerable to counterexamples or counterproposals, and conclude by drawing implications for the larger debate over whether agents' intentions are in any way relevant to permissibility and obligation.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
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
Thomas Nagel (1986). The View From Nowhere. Oxford University Press.
Thomas Scanlon (2008). Moral Dimensions: Permissibility, Meaning, Blame. Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
F. M. Kamm (2007). Intricate Ethics: Rights, Responsibilities, and Permissible Harm. New York ;Oxford University Press.
Alvin Plantinga (1993). Warrant: The Current Debate. Oxford University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Dana Kay Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless (2015). So Close, Yet So Far: Why Solutions to the Closeness Problem for the Doctrine of Double Effect Fall Short. Noûs 49 (2):376-409.
Dana Kay Nelkin & Samuel C. Rickless (forthcoming). The Relevance of Intention to Criminal Wrongdoing. Criminal Law and Philosophy:1-18.
Similar books and articles
Richard Hull (2000). Deconstructing the Doctrine of Double Effect. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 3 (2):195-207.
Jeff McMahan (1994). Revising the Doctrine of Double Effect. Journal of Applied Philosophy 11 (2):201-212.
Donald B. Marquis (1991). Four Versions of Double Effect. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 16 (5):515-544.
Lawrence Masek (2010). Intentions, Motives and the Doctrine of Double Effect. Philosophical Quarterly 60 (240):567-585.
Iii Get Checked Abstract Thomas J. Bole (1991). The Theoretical Tenability of the Doctrine of Double Effect. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 16 (5).
David K. Chan (2000). Intention and Responsibility in Double Effect Cases. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 3 (4):405-434.
John Zeis (2004). Killing Innocents and the Doctrine of Double Effect. Proceedings of the American Catholic Philosophical Association 78:133-144.
Alison Hills (2007). Intentions, Foreseen Consequences and the Doctrine of Double Effect. Philosophical Studies 133 (2):257 - 283.
Patrick A. Tully (2005). The Doctrine of Double Effect and the Question of Constraints on Business Decisions. Journal of Business Ethics 58 (1-3):51 - 63.
Stefano Predelli (2004). Bombers: Some Comments on Double Effect and Harmful Involvement. Journal of Military Ethics 3 (1):16-26.
Neil Francis Delaney (2008). Two Cheers for “Closeness”: Terror, Targeting and Double Effect. Philosophical Studies 137 (3):335 - 367.
Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen (2010). Scanlon on the Doctrine of Double Effect. Social Theory and Practice 36 (4):541-564.
Frances M. Kamm (1991). The Doctrine of Double Effect: Reflections on Theoretical and Practical Issues. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 16 (5):571-585.
Lawrence Masek (2006). Deadly Drugs and the Doctrine of Double Effect: A Reply to Tully. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 68 (2):143-151.
Sophia Reibetanz (1998). A Problem for the Doctrine of Double Effect. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 98 (2):217–223.
Added to index2012-12-08
Total downloads49 ( #88,941 of 1,911,608 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #253,681 of 1,911,608 )
How can I increase my downloads?