The idea for our paper began with a practical problem. As curricularists dedicated to an aesthetic approach to teaching, curriculum, and learning, we regularly provide workshops on this topic for teachers in K–12 schools. Our own work is based on Dewey’s aesthetic ideas1 and we have developed a theory called CRISPA2 that teachers may employ to create what we might call “wow” experiences in their own classrooms.3 That is, they can set up the conditions for students to have aesthetic experiences (...) with the material they are learning. When conducting such workshops for teachers, we often hear the observation, “This is like flow,” or we get the question, “How is this different from a spiritual experience?”Thus, this... (shrink)
In comparative studies, Confucian teaching and learning have multiple meanings. On the one hand, they refer to contemporary educational practices and contexts in Asian countries and regions such as mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, and Singapore. Comparative researchers contend that Confucian heritage Culture, a mixed and blended cultural tradition of Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism, has heavily influenced these countries and regions.1 As a result, their educational practices and contexts are different from those in Western countries.2 One indication (...) of this point is that, although teachers in Confucian teaching and learning environments conduct lectures, the learning tasks are... (shrink)
Presents a plethora of approaches to developing human potential in areas not conventionally addressed. Organized in two parts, this international collection of essays provides viable educational alternatives to those currently holding sway in an era of high-stakes accountability.
A substantial proportion of human embryos spontaneously abort soon after conception, and ethicists have argued this is problematic for the pro-life view that a human embryo has the same moral status as an adult from conception. Firstly, if human embryos are our moral equals, this entails spontaneous abortion is one of humanity’s most important problems, and it is claimed this is absurd, and a reductio of the moral status claim. Secondly, it is claimed that pro-life advocates do not act as (...) if spontaneous abortion is important, implying they are failing to fulfill their moral obligations. We report that the primary cause of spontaneous abortion is chromosomal defects, which are currently unpreventable, and show that as the other major cause of prenatal death is induced abortion, pro-life advocates can legitimately continue efforts to oppose it. We also defend the relevance of the killing and letting die distinction, which provides further justification for pro-life priorities. (shrink)
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 (...) we proposed the Modified Impairment Principle (MIP) to avoid these difficulties. Dustin Crummett has responded, arguing that MIP is open to various counterexamples which show it to be false. He also shows that MIP can generate moral dilemmas. Here, we propose a modification to MIP that resolves the issues Crummett raises. Additionally, Alex Gillham has criticized our appropriation of Don Marquis’ ‘future like ours’ reasoning about the wrongness of impairment. We show that his objections have minimal implications for our argument. (shrink)
Ectogenesis, or the use of an artificial womb to allow a foetus to develop, will likely become a reality within a few decades, and could significantly affect the abortion debate. We first examine the implications for Judith Jarvis Thomson’s violinist analogy, which argues for a woman’s right to withdraw life support from the foetus and so terminate her pregnancy, even if the foetus is granted full moral status. We show that on Thomson’s reasoning, there is no right to the death (...) of the foetus, and abortion is not permissible if ectogenesis is available, provided it is safe and inexpensive. This raises the question of whether there are persuasive reasons for the right to the death of the foetus that could be exercised in the context of ectogenesis. Eric Mathison and Jeremy Davis have examined several arguments for this right, doubting that it exists, while Joona Räsänen has recently criticized their reasoning. We respond to Räsänen’s analysis, concluding that his arguments are unsuccessful, and that there is no right to the death of the foetus in these circumstances. (shrink)
Rob Lovering has developed an interesting new critique of views that regard embryos as equally valuable as other human beings: the moral argument for frozen human embryo adoption. The argument is aimed at those who believe that the death of a frozen embryo is a very bad thing, and Lovering concludes that some who hold this view ought to prevent one of these deaths by adopting and gestating a frozen embryo. Contra Lovering, we show that there are far more effective (...) strategies for preserving the lives of frozen embryos than adoption. Moreover, we point out that those who regard the deaths of frozen embryos as a very bad thing will generally regard the deaths of all embryos as a very bad thing, whether they are discarded embryos, aborted embryos or embryos that spontaneously abort. This entails these other embryos must be taken into account when considering moral obligations, as well as other human lives at risk from preventable causes. (shrink)
In his recent article Perry Hendricks presents what he calls the impairment argument to show that abortion is immoral. To do so, he argues that to give a fetus fetal alcohol syndrome is immoral. Because killing the fetus impairs it more than giving it fetal alcohol syndrome, Hendricks concludes that killing the fetus must also be immoral. Here, I claim that killing a fetus does not impair it in the way that giving it fetal alcohol syndrome does. By examining the (...) reason why giving a fetus this condition is wrong, I conclude that the same reasoning, on common pro‐choice accounts, does not apply to killing the fetus. Accordingly, Hendricks's argument does not succeed in showing abortion is immoral. (shrink)
The substance view is an account of personhood that regards all human beings as possessing instrinsic value and moral status equivalent to that of an adult human being. Consequently, substance view proponents typically regard abortion as impermissible in most circumstances. The substance view, however, has difficulty accounting for certain intuitions regarding the badness of death for embryos and fetuses, and the wrongness of killing them. Jeff McMahan’s time-relative interest account is designed to cater for such intuitions, and so I present (...) a proposal for strengthening the substance view by incorporating McMahan’s account – the Dual-Aspect Account of the morality of killing. I show that it resolves some important issues for the substance view while preserving its central premise of moral equality for all human beings. I then compare the Dual-Aspect Account with McMahan’s Two-Tiered Account of the morality of killing, which he derives from his time-relative interest account. (shrink)
In ’Abortion and deprivation: a reply to Marquis’, Anna Christensen contends that Don Marquis’ influential ’future like ours’ argument for the immorality of abortion faces a significant challenge from the Epicurean claim that human beings cannot be harmed by their death. If deprivation requires a subject, then abortion cannot deprive a fetus of a future of value, as no individual exists to be deprived once death has occurred. However, the Epicurean account also implies that the wrongness of murder is also (...) not grounded in the badness of death, which is strongly counterintuitive. There is an alternative: we can save our intuitions by adopting a more moderate Epicurean account such as that proposed by David Hershenov, who grounds the wrongness of killing in the prevention of the benefit of further good life rather than in the badness of death. Hershenov’s account, however, is equally applicable to Marquis’ argument: abortion similarly prevents a fetus from enjoying the benefit of a future like ours. Consequently, we conclude that Christensen’s criticism of Marquis’ argument fails to undermine his reasoning. (shrink)
Perry Hendricks has recently presented the impairment argument for the immorality of abortion, to which I responded and he has now replied. The argument is based on the premise that impairing a fetus with fetal alcohol syndrome is immoral, and on the principle that if impairing an organism is immoral, impairing it to a higher degree is also—the impairment principle. If abortion impairs a fetus to a higher degree, then this principle entails abortion is immoral. In my reply, I argued (...) that abortion does not impair an organism in the way fetal alcohol syndrome does, and showed that interest theorists can avoid the argument. Hendricks has responded to my criticisms by demonstrating how abortion does impair an organism. In this reply, I acknowledge Hendricks’ point, but proceed to criticise the application of the impairment principle to abortion, showing that it is invalid if we accept his explanation for why inflicting fetal alcohol syndrome is immoral. I also argue that counter-examples show the impairment principle itself to be dubitable, concluding that the impairment argument remains unpersuasive. (shrink)
Benjamin Zolf, in his recent paper ‘No conscientious objection without normative justification: Against conscientious objection in medicine’, attempts to establish that in order to rule out arbitrary conscientious objections, a reasonability constraint is necessary. This, he contends, requires normative justification, and the subjective beliefs that ground conscientious objections cannot easily be judged by normative criteria. Zolf shows that the alternative of using extrinsic criteria, such as requiring that unjustified harm must not be caused, are likewise grounded on normative criteria. He (...) concludes that conscientious objection is therefore untenable. Here, I present an alternative account, based on the value we are willing to place on conscientious objection as an expression of freedom of conscience and religion. Using an extrinsic criterion such as harm, we can make a judgement of what degree of harm should be tolerated as the cost of permitting conscientious objection. A normative criterion for judging individual claims is therefore not required. (shrink)
OBJECTIVES: To study the resuscitation preferences, choice of decision-maker, views on the seeking of patients' wishes and determinants of these of elderly hospital in-patients. DESIGN: Questionnaire administered on admission and prior to discharge. SETTING: Two acute geriatric medicine units (Southampton and Poole). PARTICIPANTS: Two hundred and fourteen consecutive consenting mentally competent patients admitted to hospital as emergencies. RESULTS: Resuscitation was wanted by 60%, particularly married and functionally independent patients and those who had not already considered it. Not wanted resuscitation was (...) associated with lack of social contacts. Sixty-seven per cent welcomed enquiry about their preferences and 78% wanted participation in decision, 43% as sole decision-maker. Wishing to choose oneself was associated with not wanting resuscitation, prior knowledge of it, and lack of a spouse. Patients' opinions remained stable during their admission. CONCLUSIONS: Discussion of resuscitation is practical on hospital admission without causing distress and the views expressed endure through the period of hospitalisation. Elderly patients' attitudes depend partly on personal health and social circumstances. This may assist doctors when patients are unable to participate themselves. (shrink)
It is commonly argued that a serious right to life is grounded only in actual, relatively advanced psychological capacities a being has acquired. The moral permissibility of abortion is frequently argued for on these grounds. Increasingly it is being argued that such accounts also entail the permissibility of infanticide, with several proponents of these theories accepting this consequence. We show, however, that these accounts imply the permissibility of even more unpalatable acts than infanticide performed on infants: organ harvesting, live experimentation, (...) sexual interference, and discriminatory killing. The stronger intuitions against the permissibility of these ‘pre-personal acts’ allow us to re-establish a comprehensive and persuasive reductio against psychological accounts of persons. (shrink)
The question of paradox in Christian theology continues to attract attention in contemporary philosophical theology. Much of this attention understandably centers on the epistemological problems paradoxical claims pose for Christian faith. But even among those who conclude that certain points of Christian theology are paradoxical and that belief in paradoxical points of doctrine is epistemically supportable, concepts of the nature and function of paradox in Christian theology differ significantly. In this essay, after briefly noting the diversity of phenomena that count (...) as paradoxes in contemporary discourse, I critique two of the most helpful accounts of paradox in Christian theology available – James Anderson's and C. Stephen Evans's – on the way to proposing an alternative definition. That definition combines the most helpful features of those two accounts while correcting certain weaknesses in each. The result is a definition of paradox as a particular kind of mystery that fits the Reformed strand of Christian theology particularly well and involves a compelling analysis of the spirituality of the phenomenon of paradox in theology. (shrink)
In the same year, 1961, Peter D. Mitchell and Robert R.J.P. Williams both put forward hypotheses for the mechanism of oxidative phosphorylation in mitochondria and photophosphorylation in chloroplasts. Mitchell's proposal was ultimately adopted and became known as the chemiosmotic theory. Both hypotheses were based on protons and differed markedly from the then prevailing chemical theory originally proposed by E.C. Slater in 1953, which by 1961 was failing to account for a number of experimental observations. Immediately following the publication of Williams (...) 's hypothesis and before his own was published, Mitchell initiated a correspondence. Examination of the letters shows the development of a dispute based on the validity of the proposals, who should have priority and particularly whether Mitchell had drawn on Williams 's work without acknowledgement. We have concluded that Mitchell's proposals were original although it is evident that prior to the correspondence Williams had considered and rejected a proposition similar to Mitchell's theory. However, a major cause of the dispute was the difference in disciplinary backgrounds of Mitchell, a microbial biochemist and Williams, a chemist. (shrink)
In the same year, 1961, Peter D. Mitchell and Robert R.J.P. Williams both put forward hypotheses for the mechanism of oxidative phosphorylation in mitochondria and photophosphorylation in chloroplasts. Mitchell's proposal was ultimately adopted and became known as the chemiosmotic theory. Both hypotheses were based on protons and differed markedly from the then prevailing chemical theory originally proposed by E.C. Slater in 1953, which by 1961 was failing to account for a number of experimental observations. Immediately following the publication of Williams's (...) hypothesis and before his own was published, Mitchell initiated a correspondence. Examination of the letters shows the development of a dispute based on the validity of the proposals, who should have priority and particularly whether Mitchell had drawn on Williams's work without acknowledgement. We have concluded that Mitchell's proposals were original although it is evident that prior to the correspondence Williams had considered and rejected a proposition similar to Mitchell's theory. However, a major cause of the dispute was the difference in disciplinary backgrounds of Mitchell, a microbial biochemist and Williams, a chemist. (shrink)
In ‘Pro-life arguments against infanticide and why they are not convincing’ Joona Räsänen argues that Christopher Kaczor's objections to Giubilini and Minerva's position on infanticide are not persuasive. We argue that Räsänen's criticism is largely misplaced, and that he has not engaged with Kaczor's strongest arguments against infanticide. We reply to each of Räsänen's criticisms, drawing on the full range of Kaczor's arguments, as well as adding some of our own.
Decisions about cardiopulmonary resuscitation may be based on medical prognosis, quality of life and patients' choices. Low survival rates indicate its overuse. Although the concept of medical futility has limitations, several strong predictors of non-survival have been identified and prognostic indices developed. Early results indicate that consideration of resuscitation in the elderly should be very selective, and support "opt-in" policies. In this minority of patients, quality of life is the principal issue. This is subjective and best assessed by the individual (...) in question. Patients' attitudes cannot be predicted reliably and surrogate decision-making is inadequate. Lay knowledge is poor. However, patients can use prognostic information to make rational choices. The majority welcome discussion of resuscitation and prefer this to be initiated by their doctors; many wish to decide for themselves. There is little evidence that this causes distress. The views of such patients, if competent, should be sought actively. (shrink)
The rapid development of artificial womb technologies means that we must consider if and when it is permissible to kill the human subject of ectogestation—recently termed a ‘gestateling’ by Elizabeth Chloe Romanis—prior to ‘birth’. We describe the act of deliberately killing the gestateling as gestaticide, and argue that there are good reasons to maintain that gestaticide is morally equivalent to infanticide, which we consider to be morally impermissible. First, we argue that gestaticide is harder to justify than abortion, primarily because (...) the gestateling is completely independent of its biological parents. Second, we argue that gestaticide is morally equivalent to infanticide. To demonstrate this, we explain that gestatelings are born in a straightforward sense, which entails that killing them is infanticide. However, to strengthen our overall claim, we also show that if gestatelings are not considered to have been born, killing them is still equivalent to killing neonates with congenital anomalies and disabilities, which again is infanticide. We conclude by considering how our discussion of gestaticide has implications for the permissibility of withdrawing life-sustaining treatment from gestatelings. (shrink)
Bruce Janz, Jessica Locke, and Cynthia Willett interact in this exchange with different aspects of Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad’s book Human Being, Bodily Being. Through “constructive inter-cultural thinking”, they seek to engage with Ram-Prasad’s “lower-case p” phenomenology, which exemplifies “how to think otherwise about the nature and role of bodiliness in human experience”. This exchange, which includes Ram-Prasad’s reply to their interventions, pushes the reader to reflect more about different aspects of bodiliness.
In a recent article in Religious Studies, Professor P. W. Gooch attempts to wean the orthodox Christian from anthropological materialism by consideration of the question of the nature of the post-mortem person in the resurrection. He argues that the view that the resurrected person is a psychophysical organism who is in some physical sense the same as the ante-mortem person is inconsistent with the Pauline view of the resurrected body; rather, according to him, Paul's view is most consistent with that (...) which affirms the disembodied survival of the person. ‘I want to argue’, he writes, ‘for the thesis that a Pauline resurrection body may well be ontologically the same as a disembodied person.’ I intend to show that Professor Gooch has failed to provide any support for this view and indeed that his own view falls prey to the criticisms which he has raised against other views. (shrink)
Jeremy Williams has argued that if we are committed to a liberal pro-choice stance with regard to selective abortion for disability, we will be unable to justify the prohibition of sex selective abortion. Here, I apply his reasoning to selective abortion based on other traits pregnant women may decide are undesirable. These include susceptibility to disease, level of intelligence, physical appearance, sexual orientation, religious belief and criminality—in fact any traits attributable to some degree to a genetic component. Firstly, I review (...) Williams’ argument, which claims that if a woman is granted the right to abort based on fetal impairment, then by parity of reasoning she should also be granted the right to choose sex selective abortion. I show that these same considerations that entail the permissibility of sex selective abortion are also applicable to genetic selection abortion. I then examine the objections to sex selective abortion that Williams considers and rejects, and show that they also lack force against genetic selection abortion. Finally, I consider some additional objections that might be raised, and conclude that a liberal pro-choice stance on selective abortion for disability entails the permissibility of selective abortion for most genetic traits. (shrink)
To determine when the life of a human organism begins, Mark T. Brown has developed the somatic integration definition of life. Derived from diagnostic criteria for human death, Brown’s account requires the presence of a life‐regulation internal control system for an entity to be considered a living organism. According to Brown, the earliest point at which a developing human could satisfy this requirement is at the beginning of the fetal stage, and so the embryo is not regarded as a living (...) human organism. This, Brown claims, has significant bioethical implications for both abortion and embryo experimentation. Here, we dispute the cogency of Brown’s derivation. Diagnostic criteria for death are used to determine when an organism irreversibly ceases functioning as an integrated whole, and may vary significantly depending on how developed the organism is. Brown’s definition is derived from a specific definition of death applicable to postnatal human beings, which is insufficient for generating a general definition for human organismal life. We have also examined the bioethical implications of Brown’s view, and have concluded that they are not as significant as he believes. Whether the embryo is classified as a human organism is of peripheral interest—a far more morally relevant question is whether the embryo is a biological individual with an identity that is capable of persisting during development. (shrink)
Eric Vogelstein has defended Don Marquis’ ‘future-like-ours’ argument for the immorality of abortion against what is known as the Identity Objection, which contends that for a fetus to have a future like ours, it must be numerically identical to an entity like us that possesses valuable experiences some time in the future. On psychological accounts of personal identity, there is no identity relationship between the fetus and the entity with valuable experiences that it will become. Vogelstein maintains that a non‐sentient (...) fetus nonetheless has a future like ours because it is numerically identical with a future organism that has a mind that bears valuable experiences. Skott Brill, drawing on Jeff McMahan’s embodied mind account, denies that human organisms directly have experiences, claiming that they only have experiences derivatively by virtue of their thinking part, and the loss of a future like ours is not transferred to the organism. I show that on McMahan’s account, a strong case can be made for the organism having experiences directly, and the subject having these experiences derivatively. This negates Brill’s reasoning, although it does imply that non-sentient fetuses do not have a future like ours in quite the same way as we do. I conclude this is not problematic for Marquis’ argument. (shrink)
One of the most influential philosophical arguments in favour of the permissibility of abortion is Judith Jarvis Thomson’s violinist analogy, presented in ‘A Defense of Abortion’. Its appeal for pro-choice advocates lies in Thomson’s granting that the fetus is a person with equivalent moral status to any other human being, and yet demonstrating—to those who accept her reasoning—that abortion is still permissible. In her argument, Thomson draws heavily on the parable of the Good Samaritan, arguing that gestating a fetus in (...) some circumstances is what she calls a Good Samaritan act, and claiming that we are not morally required to be Good Samaritans. Here, I argue that Thomson has subverted the parable to justify an action that is the antithesis of its meaning. I contend that Christians are required to be Good Samaritans, and explain that for Christians, this entails abortion is impermissible in all circumstances. Further, I argue that the parable shows the fetus is our neighbour in need of our mercy and assistance, and consequently Christians should be actively involved in helping to ensure the unborn are protected, whether they are fetuses in danger of induced abortion or miscarriage, or surplus frozen embryos. (shrink)
Joona Räsänen has proposed a concept he calls Schrödinger’s Fetus as a solution to reconciling what he believes are two widely held but contradictory intuitions. I show that Elizabeth Harman’s Actual Future Principle, upon which Schrödinger’s Fetus is based, uses a more convincing account of personhood. I also argue that both Räsänen and Harman, by embracing animalism, weaken their arguments by allowing Don Marquis’ ‘future like ours’ argument for the immorality of abortion into the frame.
Joona Räsänen has argued that pro‐life arguments against the permissibility of infanticide are not persuasive, and fail to show it to be immoral. We responded to Räsänen’s arguments, concluding that his critique of pro‐life arguments was misplaced. Räsänen has recently replied in ‘Why pro‐life arguments still are not convincing: A reply to my critics’, providing some additional arguments as to why he does not find pro‐life arguments against infanticide convincing. Here, we respond briefly to Räsänen’s critique of the substance view, (...) and also to his most important claim: that possession of a right to life by an infant does not rule out the permissibility of infanticide. We demonstrate that this claim is unfounded, and conclude that Räsänen has not refuted pro‐life arguments against infanticide. (shrink)