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  1. Moral Responsibility and Desert of Praise and Blame.Audrey L. Anton - 2015 - Lexington Books.
    Through critical examination of three main contemporary approaches to describing moral responsibility, this book illustrates why philosophers must take into account the relationship between retrospective moral responsibility and desert of praise or blame. The author advances the moral attitude account, whereby desert of praise and blame depends on the agent’s moral attitudes in response to moral reasons, and retrospective moral responsibility results from expressions of those attitudes in overt behavior.
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  2. Responding to Global Poverty: Harm, Responsibility, and Agency.Christian Barry & Gerhard Øverland - 2016 - Cambridge University Press.
    This book explores the nature of moral responsibilities of affluent individuals in the developed world, addressing global poverty and arguments that philosophers have offered for having these responsibilities. The first type of argument grounds responsibilities in the ability to avert serious suffering by taking on some cost. The second argument seeks to ground responsibilities in the fact that the affluent are contributing to such poverty. The authors criticise many of the claims advanced by those who seek to ground stringent responsibilities (...)
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  3. Autonomy and the Moral Symmetry Principle: Reply to Frowe and Tooley.Jacob Blair - 2018 - Res Publica 24 (4):531-541.
    Helen Frowe has recently objected to Michael Tooley’s famous Moral Symmetry Principle, which is meant to show that in themselves killing and letting die are morally equivalent. I argue that her objection is not compelling but a more compelling objection is available. Specifically, Tooley’s rebuttal of a proposed counter-example to his Moral Symmetry Principle has two problematic implications. First, it undercuts the very principle itself. If we reject the proposed counter-example, then any instance of the Moral Symmetry Principle will actually (...)
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  4. The Evil of Refraining to Save: Liu on the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing.Jacob Blair - 2017 - Diametros 52:127-137.
    In a recent article, Xiaofei Liu seeks to defend, from the standpoint of consequentialism, the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing: DDA. While there are various conceptions of DDA, Liu understands it as the view that it is more difficult to justify doing harm than allowing harm. Liu argues that a typical harm doing involves the production of one more evil and one less good than a typical harm allowing. Thus, prima facie, it takes a greater amount of good to justify (...)
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  5. Fiona Woollard, Doing and Allowing Harm. [REVIEW]Jacob Blair - 2016 - Journal of Value Inquiry 50 (3):673-681.
  6. Two Ways to Kill a Patient.Ben Bronner - 2018 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 43 (1):44-63.
    According to the Standard View, a doctor who withdraws life-sustaining treatment does not kill the patient but rather allows the patient to die—an important distinction, according to some. I argue that killing can be understood in either of two ways, and given the relevant understanding, the Standard View is insulated from typical criticisms. I conclude by noting several problems for the Standard View that remain to be fully addressed.
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  7. The Total Artificial Heart and the Dilemma of Deactivation.Ben Bronner - 2016 - Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 26 (4):347-367.
    It is widely believed to be permissible for a physician to discontinue any treatment upon the request of a competent patient. Many also believe it is never permissible for a physician to intentionally kill a patient. I argue that the prospect of deactivating a patient’s artificial heart presents us with a dilemma: either the first belief just mentioned is false or the second one is. Whichever horn of the dilemma we choose has significant implications for contemporary medical ethics.
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  8. Moral Responsibility and Omissions.Jeremy Byrd - 2007 - Philosophical Quarterly 57 (226):56–67.
    Frankfurt-type examples seem to show that agents can be morally responsible for their actions and omissions even if they could not have done otherwise. Fischer and Ravizza's influential account of moral responsibility is largely based on such examples. I examine a problem with their account of responsibility in cases where we fail to act. The solution to this problem has a surprising and far reaching implication concerning the construction of successful Frankfurt-type examples. I argue that the role of the counterfactual (...)
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  9. A Reappraisal of the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing.David K. Chan - 2010 - In Joseph Keim Campbell, Michael O'Rourke & Harry S. Silverstein (eds.), Action, Ethics, and Responsibility. MIT Press. pp. 25-45.
    Warren Quinn and Philippa Foot have given versions of the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing justifying a moral distinction between doing something to bring about harm, and doing nothing to prevent harm. They argue that it is justified to allow one person to die so that one can save a larger number of people, but not to kill one person to achieve the same purpose. In this chapter, I show that the examples typically used to support the DDA do not (...)
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  10. Two Distinctions That Do Make a Difference: The Action/Omission Distinction and the Principle of Double Effect.Timothy Chappell - 2002 - Philosophy 77 (2):211-233.
    The paper outlines and explores a possible strategy for defending both the action/omission distinction (AOD) and the principle of double effect (PDE). The strategy is to argue that there are degrees of actionhood, and that we are in general less responsible for what has a lower degree of actionhood, because of that lower degree. Moreover, what we omit generally has a lower degree of actionhood than what we actively do, and what we do under known-but-not-intended descriptions generally has a lower (...)
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  11. Omissions: Agency, Metaphysics, and Responsibility.Randolph Clarke - 2014 - Oxford University Press.
    Philosophical theories of agency have focused primarily on actions and activities. But, besides acting, we often omit to do or refrain from doing certain things. How is this aspect of our agency to be conceived? This book offers a comprehensive account of omitting and refraining, addressing issues ranging from the nature of agency and moral responsibility to the metaphysics of absences and causation. Topics addressed include the role of intention in intentional omission, the connection between negligence and omission, the distinction (...)
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  12. Omissions: Agency, Metaphysics and Responsibility, Written by Randolph Clarke.Tyron Goldschmidt - 2018 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 15 (1):97-99.
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  13. Murdering an Accident Victim: A New Objection to the Bare-Difference Argument.Scott Hill - 2018 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 96 (4):767-778.
    Many philosophers, psychologists, and medical practitioners believe that killing is no worse than letting die on the basis of James Rachels's Bare-Difference Argument. I show that his argument is unsound. In particular, a premise of the argument is that his examples are as similar as is consistent with one being a case of killing and the other being a case of letting die. However, the subject who lets die has both the ability to kill and the ability to let die (...)
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  14. Philosophical Intuitions and Psychological Theory.Tamara Horowitz - 1998 - Ethics 108 (2):367-385.
    To what extent can philosophical thought experiments reveal norms? Some ethicists have argued that certain thought experiments reveal that people draw a morally significant distinction between "doing" and "allowing". I examine one such thought experiment in detail and argue that the intuitions it elicits can be explained by "prospect theory", a psychological theory about the way people reason. The extent to which such alternative explanations of the results of thought experiments in philosophy are generally available is an empirical question.
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  15. Is the Distinction Between Positive Actions and Omissions Value-Neutral?Douglas N. Husak - 1985 - Tulane Studies in Philosophy 33:83-92.
  16. Killing, Letting Die, and the Case for Mildly Punishing Bad Samaritanism.Ken Levy - 2010 - Georgia Law Review 44:607-695.
    For over a century now, American scholars (among others) have been debating the merits of “bad Samaritan” laws — laws punishing people for failing to attempt easy and safe rescues. Unfortunately, the opponents of bad Samaritan laws have mostly prevailed. In the United States, the “no-duty-to-rescue” rule dominates. Only four states have passed bad Samaritan laws, and these laws impose only the most minimal punishment — either sub-$500 fines or short-term imprisonment. -/- This Article argues that every state should criminalize (...)
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  17. Why It Is Sometimes Fair to Blame Agents for Unavoidable Actions and Omissions.Ken Levy - 2005 - American Philosophical Quarterly 42 (2):93 - 104.
    It is generally thought that ought implies can. If this maxim is correct, then my inability to do otherwise entails that I cannot be blamed for failing to do otherwise. In this article, however, I use Harry Frankfurt’s famous argument against the "Principle of Alternative Possibilities" (PAP) to show that the maxim is actually false, that I can be blamed for failing to do otherwise even in situations where I could not have done otherwise. In these situations, I do not (...)
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  18. The Moral Equivalence of Action and Omission.Judith Lichtenberg - 1982 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy, Supplementary Volume 8:19.
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  19. Compatibilists Could Have Done Otherwise: Responsibility and Negative Agency.Alison McIntyre - 1994 - Philosophical Review 103 (3):453-488.
  20. Rational Learners and Non-Utilitarian Rules.Shaun Nichols, Shikhar Kumar & Theresa Lopez - manuscript
  21. Risk, Everyday Intuitions, and the Institutional Value of Tort Law.Govind C. Persad - 2009 - Stan. L. Rev 62:1445.
    This Note offers a normative critique of cost-benefit analysis, one informed by deontological moral theory, in the context of the debate over whether tort litigation or a non-tort approach is the appropriate response to mass harm. The first Part argues that the difference between lay and expert intuitions about risk and harm often reflects a difference in normative judgments about the existing facts, rather than a difference in belief about what facts exist, which makes the lay intuitions more defensible. The (...)
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  22. Unifying Morality’s Influence on Non-Moral Judgments: The Relevance of Alternative Possibilities.Jonathan Phillips, Jamie B. Luguri & Joshua Knobe - 2015 - Cognition 145:30-42.
    Past work has demonstrated that people’s moral judgments can influence their judgments in a number of domains that might seem to involve straightforward matters of fact, including judgments about freedom, causation, the doing/allowing distinction, and intentional action. The present studies explore whether the effect of morality in these four domains can be explained by changes in the relevance of alternative possibilities. More precisely, we propose that moral judgment influences the degree to which people regard certain alternative possibilities as relevant, which (...)
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  23. Civic Trust.Ryan Preston-Roedder - 2017 - Philosophers' Imprint 17.
    It is a commonplace that there are limits to the ways we can permissibly treat people, even in the service of good ends. For example, we may not steal someone’s wallet, even if we plan to donate the contents to famine relief, or break a promise to help a colleague move, even if we encounter someone else on the way whose need is somewhat more urgent. In other words, we should observe certain constraints against mistreating people, where a constraint is (...)
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  24. The Principle of Agency.James Rachels - 1998 - Bioethics 12 (2):150–161.
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  25. Environmentalism, Moral Responsibility, and the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing.Allen Thompson - 2006 - Ethics, Place and Environment 9 (3):269 – 278.
    In 'Doing and Allowing', Samuel Scheffler argues that if a person sees herself as subject to norms of individual moral responsibility, then the content of her first-order substantive norms of individual moral responsibility must attribute greater responsibility to what one does than to what one could, but fails, to prevent. This paper is about how a morally responsible agent could deny the doctrine of doing and allowing, why an environmentalist should, and what this means for environmental ethical theory.
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  26. On Killing as Causing Death.Cheng-Chih Tsai - 2016 - Prolegomena 15 (2):163-175.
    Common sense has that killing someone amounts to causing the death of someone. This makes killing a physical, biological, or, at best, metaphysical issue, and, as a consequence, the ethics of killing can be dealt with independently of the non-ethical issue of who the killer is. However, in this paper, we show that this is not the case. A physical/biological definition of death plus a metaphysical definition of causation does not exhaust the meaning of killing. Rather, the notion of killing (...)
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  27. Causal Relevance, Permissible Omissions, and Famine Relief.Chad Vance - 2018 - Dialectica 72 (1):25-47.
    Failures are sometimes, but not always, causally relevant to events. For instance, the failure of the sprinkler was causally relevant to the house fire. However, the failure of the dam upstream to break (thus inundating the house with water) was not. Similarly, failures to prevent harms are sometimes, but not always, morally wrong. For instance, failing to save a nearby drowning child is morally wrong. Yet, you are also in some sense “allowing” someone on another continent to drown right now, (...)
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