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David Benatar [64]D. Benatar [9]
  1. David Benatar (2006). Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming Into Existence. New York ;Oxford University Press.
    Better Never to Have Been argues for a number of related, highly provocative, views: (1) Coming into existence is always a serious harm. (2) It is always wrong to have children. (3) It is wrong not to abort fetuses at the earlier stages of gestation. (4) It would be better if, as a result of there being no new people, humanity became extinct. These views may sound unbelievable--but anyone who reads Benatar will be obliged to take them seriously.
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  2. David Benatar (2014). Taking Humour (Ethics) Seriously, But Not Too Seriously. Journal of Practical Ethics 2 (1):24-43.
    Humour is worthy of serious ethical consideration. However, it is often taken far too seriously. In this paper, it is argued that while humour is sometimes unethical, it is wrong much less often than many people think. Non-contextual criticisms, which claim that certain kinds of humour are always wrong, are rejected. Contextual criticisms, which take issue with particular instances of humour rather than types of humour, are more promising. However, it is common to overstate the number of contexts in which (...)
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  3. David Benatar (2013). Still Better Never to Have Been: A Reply to (More of) My Critics. [REVIEW] Journal of Ethics 17 (1-2):121-151.
    In Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming into Existence, I argued that coming into existence is always a harm and that procreation is wrong. In this paper, I respond to those of my critics to whom I have not previously responded. More specifically, I engage the objections of Tim Bayne, Ben Bradley, Campbell Brown, David DeGrazia, Elizabeth Harman, Chris Kaposy, Joseph Packer and Saul Smilansky.
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  4.  86
    David Archard & David Benatar (eds.) (2010). Procreation and Parenthood: The Ethics of Bearing and Rearing Children. Oxford University Press.
    Procreation and Parenthood offers new and original essays by leading philosophers on some of the main ethical issues raised by these activities.
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  5.  12
    David Benatar (2012). The Second Sexism: Discrimination Against Men and Boys. Wiley-Blackwell.
    In this book, philosophy professor David Benatar provides details of these and other examples of what he calls the “second sexism.” He discusses what sexism is, responds to the objections of those who would deny that there is a second ...
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  6. David Benatar (2001). Why the Naïve Argument Against Moral Vegetarianism Really is Naïve. Environmental Values 10 (1):103 - 112.
    When presented with the claim of the moral vegetarian that it is wrong for us to eat meat, many people respond that because it is not wrong for lions, tigers and other carnivores to kill and eat animals, it cannot be wrong for humans to do so. This response is what Peter Alward has called the naive argument. Peter Alward has defended the naive argument against objections. I argue that his defence fails.
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  7.  77
    David Benatar (2015). The Gendered Conference Campaign: A Critique. Philosophia 43 (1):13-23.
    The Gendered Conference Campaign seeks to reduce the prevalence of conferences at which the keynote speakers are all male. Such conferences, according to proponents of the campaign, stereotype philosophy as male, contribute to implicit bias against women and perpetuate stereotype threat. I argue, first, that if a more diverse list of keynote speakers were the correct way to counter harms such as implicit bias and stereotype threat, then a Gendered Conference Campaign would not be the solution. The campaign would need (...)
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  8.  76
    David Benatar (forthcoming). Two Views of Sexual Ethics: Promiscuity Pedophilia, and Rape. Public Affairs Quarterly.
  9. David Benatar (1997). Why It Is Better Never to Come Into Existence. American Philosophical Quarterly 34 (3):345 - 355.
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  10.  45
    Michael Benatar & David Benatar (2003). Between Prophylaxis and Child Abuse: The Ethics of Neonatal Male Circumcision. American Journal of Bioethics 3 (2):35-48.
    Opinion about neonatal male circumcision is deeply divided. Some take it to be a prophylactic measure with unequivocal and significant health benefits, while others consider it a form of child abuse. We argue against both these polar views. In doing so, we discuss whether circumcision constitutes bodily mutilation, whether the absence of the child's informed consent makes it wrong, the nature and strength of the evidence regarding medical harms and benefits, and what moral weight cultural considerations have. We conclude that (...)
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  11. David Benatar (1999). The Unbearable Lightness of Bringing Into Being. Journal of Applied Philosophy 16 (2):173–180.
  12. David Benatar (2008). Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming Into Existence. Oxford University Press Uk.
    Better Never to Have Been argues for a number of related, highly provocative, views: Coming into existence is always a serious harm. It is always wrong to have children. It is wrong not to abort foetuses at the earlier stages of gestation. It would be better if, as a result of there being no new people, humanity became extinct. These views may sound unbelievable - but anyone who reads Benatar will be obliged to take them seriously.
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  13.  22
    David Benatar (2005). The Trouble with Universal Declarations. Developing World Bioethics 5 (3):220–224.
    ABSTRACTA number of problems plague universal declarations. To the extent that those drafting and adopting the declaration represent a range of different views, consensus can only be obtained if the declaration makes minimalist claims that all can support, or makes claims that are vague enough that they can be interpreted to everybody's satisfaction. To the extent that a universal declaration avoids these problems, and takes an unequivocal and controversial stand, it does so by privileging the view that is hegemonic . (...)
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  14. David Benatar (2011). No Life is Good. The Philosophers' Magazine 53 (53):62-66.
    The worst pains seem to be worse than the best pleasures are good. Anybody who doubts this should consider what choice they would make if they wereoffered the option of securing an hour of the most sublime pleasures possible in exchange for suffering an hour of the worst pain possible.
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  15. David Benatar (2006). What's God Got to Do with It? Atheism and Religious Practice. Ratio 19 (4):383–400.
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  16.  63
    David Benatar (2008). The Optimism Delusion. Think 6 (16):19.
    In the first of our three pieces responding to Richard Dawkins's The God Delusion, David Benatar suggests that Dawkins is preaching.
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  17.  63
    David Benatar & Michael Benatar (2001). A Pain in the Fetus: Toward Ending Confusion About Fetal Pain. Bioethics 15 (1):57–76.
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  18.  23
    D. Benatar (2012). Every Conceivable Harm: A Further Defence of Anti-Natalism. South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (1):128-164.
    Many people are resistant to the conclusions for which I argued in Better Never to Have Been . I have previously responded to most of the published criticisms of my arguments. Here I respond to a new batch of critics (and to some fellow anti-natalists) who gathered for a conference at the University of Johannesburg and whose papers are published in this special issue of the South African Journal of Philosophy . I am also taking the opportunity to respond to (...)
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  19.  7
    D. Benatar (2007). Moral Theories May Have Some Role in Teaching Applied Ethics. Journal of Medical Ethics 33 (11):671-672.
    In a recent paper, Rob Lawlor argues that moral theories should not be taught in courses on applied ethics. The author contends that Dr Lawlor’s arguments overlook at least two important roles that some attention to ethical theories may play in practical ethics courses. The conclusion is not that moral theory must be taught, but rather that there is more to be said for it than Dr Lawlor’s arguments reveal.
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  20.  83
    David Benatar (2007). Unscientific Ethics: Science and Selective Ethics. Hastings Center Report 37 (1):30-32.
  21.  17
    David Benatar (2011). A First Name Basis? Think 10 (29):51-57.
    Many societies are now characterized by much more informality than they were before. One manifestation of this is that whereas children would previously address adults more deferentially , they are now much more likely to call adults by their first names. The same is true of younger adults addressing considerably older adults. Is this greater familiarity acceptable or should it be avoided?
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  22.  78
    David Benatar (1998). Corporal Punishment. Social Theory and Practice 24 (2):237-260.
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  23.  65
    David Benatar (2013). There's No Method in the Badness. Bioethics 27 (3):174-174.
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  24.  18
    David Benatar (1999). Prejudice in Jest: When Racial and Gender Humor Harms. Public Affairs Quarterly 13 (2):191-203.
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  25.  59
    David Benatar (2001). To Be or Not to Have Been? International Journal of Applied Philosophy 15 (2):255-266.
    Most people think that their coming into existence benefited them. This paper reports on and analyses a study that shows that most people, when making such a judgement, do not really consider the counterfactual case -- the scenario in which they never come into existence. Because proper consideration is not given to both options, the ranking of one over the other is not an appropriately informed judgement. The preference for having come into existence is thus a profoundly unreliable indicator of (...)
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  26.  8
    D. Benatar (2006). Bioethics and Health and Human Rights: A Critical View. Journal of Medical Ethics 32 (1):17-20.
    Recent decades have seen the emergence of two new fields of inquiry into ethical issues in medicine. These are the fields of bioethics and of health and human rights. In this critical review of these fields, the author argues that bioethics, partly because it has been construed so broadly, suffers from quality control problems. The author also argues that the field of health and human rights is superfluous because it does nothing that cannot be done by either bioethics of the (...)
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  27.  31
    David Benatar (2013). Pedophilia. In Hugh LaFollette (ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Wiley-Blackwell
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  28.  44
    David Benatar (2000). The Wrong of Wrongful Life. American Philosophical Quarterly 37 (2):175 - 183.
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  29.  57
    David Benatar (2011). The Owl and the Ostrich: Reply to Sami Pihlström on Ethical Unthinkabilities and Philosophical Seriousness. Metaphilosophy 42 (5):605-616.
    Sami Pihlström argues in his “Ethical Unthinkabilities and Philosophical Seriousness” that there are some philosophical views that are so dangerous that we should not discuss them. He advances this argument with special reference to my (anti-natalist) view that being brought into existence is always a serious harm. In response I argue: (a) that there are major flaws in his argument for the conclusion that we should not think about (purportedly) unthinkable views; and (b) that my views about the harm of (...)
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  30.  32
    David Benatar (2014). Christine Overall: Why Have Children? The Ethical Debate. [REVIEW] Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 17 (3):583-585.
    The prevailing view about procreation, Christine Overall observes, is that “having children is the default position; not having children is what requires explanation and justification” (p. 3). These assumptions, she says, “are the opposite of what they ought to be” and that the “burden of proof … should rest primarily on those who choose to have children” (ibid). The ostensible goal of Why Have Children? is to discuss when this burden is and is not met.Professor Overall’s conclusions are much less (...)
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  31.  29
    David Benatar (2006). A Storm in a Turban. Think 5 (13):17-22.
    Did those who published the cartoons of Muhammad do something wrong?
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  32.  12
    D. Benatar (2009). Grim News for an Unoriginal Position: A Reply to Seth Baum. Journal of Medical Ethics 35 (5):328-329.
    Seth Baum suggests that my claim that it is better never to come into existence “can readily be rejected not just out of reflexive distaste for the claim but also out of sound ethical reasoning”. In my reply, I argue that Mr Baum fails to state accurately what my arguments are, and then attempts to refute them by association with other views that he dismisses perfunctorily. Where he does actually engage in my views, his response is effectively merely to assert (...)
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  33.  12
    David Benatar (2008). Non-Therapeutic Pediatric Interventions. In Peter A. Singer & A. M. Viens (eds.), The Cambridge Textbook of Bioethics. Cambridge University Press
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  34.  69
    David Benatar (2007). Jonathan Glover, Choosing Children: The Ethical Dilemmas of Genetic Intervention. [REVIEW] Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 10 (2):227-228.
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  35.  6
    D. Benatar (2009). Teaching Moral Theories is an Option: Reply to Rob Lawlor. Journal of Medical Ethics 35 (6):395-396.
    In his response to my earlier criticism, Rob Lawlor argues that the benefits I suggest can be derived from teaching moral theories in applied ethics courses can be obtained in other ways. In my reply, I note that because I never claimed the benefits could be obtained only from teaching moral theories, Dr Lawlor’s response fails to refute my earlier argument that some attention to moral theories is an option in applied ethics courses.
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  36.  25
    David Benatar (2008). Cartoons and Consequences. Think 6 (17-18):53-57.
    Philosophical debate over the infamous Danish cartoons of Muhammad continues.
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  37.  18
    David Benatar (2012). A First Name Basis?–Erratum. Think 11 (30):115-115.
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  38.  9
    David Benatar (2001). To Be or Not to Have Been?: Defective Counterfactual Reasoning About One’s Own Existence. International Journal of Applied Philosophy 15 (2):255-266.
    Most people think that their coming into existence benefited them. This paper reports on and analyses a study that shows that most people, when making such a judgement, do not really consider the counterfactual case -- the scenario in which they never come into existence. Because proper consideration is not given to both options, the ranking of one over the other is not an appropriately informed judgement. The preference for having come into existence is thus a profoundly unreliable indicator of (...)
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  39.  38
    David Benatar (2011). Choosing Tomorrow's Children. Social Theory and Practice 37 (3):524-530.
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  40.  11
    Peter C. Adamson, Carmen Paradis, Martin L. Smith, Nicholas Agar, Jacob M. Appel, David Benatar, Nancy Berlinger, Daniel Brudney, Lucy M. Candib & Arthur L. Caplan (2007). Following is the Comprehensive Index for Volume 37 of the Hastings Center Report, Covering All Feature Material From 2007. Letters Have Not Been Included. Ffl Complete Issues Are Available for Volume 37 (2007) and May Be Purchased for $16.00 Each, Plus Shipping. Please Contact the Circulation Department, The Hastings Center, 21 Malcolm Gordon Road, Garrison, NY 10524; Tel.:(845) 424-4040; Fax:(845) 424-4545; E-Mail: Publications@ Thehastingscenter. Org. [REVIEW] Hastings Center Report 37.
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  41.  10
    D. Benatar (2007). Grim News From the Original Position: A Reply to Professor Doyal. Journal of Medical Ethics 33 (10):577-577.
    In his review of my book, Better never to have been, Len Doyal suggests, contrary to my view, that rational beings in the original position might prefer coming into existence to the alternative of never existing, if their lives were to include enough good and not too much bad. I argue, in response, that Professor Doyal fails to make his case.
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  42.  35
    David Benatar (2003). The Second Sexism. Social Theory and Practice 29 (2):177-210.
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  43.  18
    David Benatar (2005). Sexist Language: Alternatives to the Alternatives. Public Affairs Quarterly 19 (1):1-9.
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  44.  19
    David Benatar (2012). Second Sexism. The Philosophers' Magazine 58:19-20.
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  45.  7
    D. Benatar (2002). Death and Compassion (Book). South African Journal of Philosophy 21 (1):83-84.
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  46.  15
    David Benatar (2015). Procreative Permissiveness. Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (5):417-418.
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  47.  12
    David Benatar (2014). Creation Ethics: Reproduction, Genetics, and the Quality of Life, by David DeGrazia. Mind 123 (490):585-588.
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  48.  25
    David Benatar (2003). The Second Sexism, a Second Time. Social Theory and Practice 29 (2):275-296.
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  49.  12
    David Benatar (2012). How Does Anybody Live in This Strange Place? A Reply to Samantha Vice. South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (4):619-361.
    This article builds on Samantha Vice’s argument on the problem of whiteness in contemporary South Africa. I will explore the thesis of invisibility regarding whiteness and argue for its relevance to the rich per se. This thesis demonstrates how white privilege and affluence, despite being glaringly visible in a concrete sense, is rendered invisible together with the mostly black poverty by which it is contrasted. The invisibility of whiteness translates and flows into the so-called ‘invisibility of richness’, which involves anyone (...)
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  50.  30
    David Benatar & Michael Benatar (2003). 3:2 Target Article Authors Respond to Commentators: How Not to Argue About Circumcision. American Journal of Bioethics 3 (2):1 – 9.
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