Sexual Ethics

Edited by Benjamin Smart (University of Birmingham, University of Johannesburg)
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  1. Maturing the Minor, Marginalizing the Family: On the Social Construction of the Mature Minor.R. Barina & J. P. Bishop - 2013 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 38 (3):300-314.
    The doctrine of the mature minor began as an emergency exception to the rule of parental consent. Over time, the doctrine crept into cases that were non-emergent. In this essay, we show how the doctrine also developed in the context of the latter part of the 20th century, at the same time that the sexual revolution, the pill, and sexual liberation came to be seen as important symbols of female liberation—liberation that required that female minors be granted the status of (...)
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  2. A Philosophical Analysis of Sexual Ethics.Raymond Belliotti - 1979 - Journal of Social Philosophy 10 (3):8-11.
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  3. Lesbian Ethics and the Journal Lesbian Ethics: A Review.Claudia Card - 1992 - Hypatia 7 (4):207 - 211.
    Lesbian Ethics, a U.S. journal of lesbian culture, has offered highly readable philosophical essays, reviews, discussions, and other nonfiction since late 1984 (twelve issues to date). It provides a forum in which the meaning of "lesbian" takes shape from self concepts formed in cooperative interaction and thus lays the ground-work for lesbians becoming publicly recognized as the foremost interpreters of lesbian identity and history.
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  4. The Judas Within: A Look at the Sexual Abuse Crisis in the Catholic Church.Christopher Chan & Brenda Scott-Ladd - 2014 - Ethics and Behavior 24 (4):326-339.
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  5. The Feminist Sexuality Debate: Ethics and Politics.Cheryl H. Cohen - 1986 - Hypatia 1 (2):71-86.
    The purpose of this paper is to offer a critical evaluation of representative positions in the feminst sexuality debate and to suggest that ethical considerations are essential to the complex task of political transformation which is the goal of both sides in the debate. This paper explores both a "rights view" of ethics and a "responsibilities view" and shows, through specific examples, how an appeal to ethics might take feminist sexual politics beyond the current debate.
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  6. Queer Ethics; or, The Challenge of Bisexuality to Lesbian Ethics.Elisabeth D. Däumer - 1992 - Hypatia 7 (4):91-105.
    Due to its problematic political and social position between two opposed sexual cultures, bisexuality has often been ignored by feminist and lesbian theorists both as a concept and a realm of experiences. The essay argues that bisexuality, precisely because it transgresses bipolar notions of fixed gendered and sexed identities, is usefully explored by lesbian and feminist theorists, enhancing our effort to devise an ethics of difference and to develop nonoppressive ways of responding to alterity.
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  7. The Rights and Wrongs of Prostitution.Julia O'Connell Davidson - 2002 - Hypatia 17 (2):84-98.
    This essay critically explores contemporary Euro-American feminist debate on prostitution. It argues that to develop analyses relevant to the experience of more than just a small minority of "First World" women, those who are concerned with prostitution as a form of work need to look beyond liberal discourse on property and contractual consent for ways of conceptualizing the rights and wrongs of "sex work.".
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  8. Mark D. Jordan The Ethics of Sex.P. Dearey - 2002 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 19 (3):305-305.
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  9. The Penn State Sex Abuse Scandal: Personal and Psychological Insights.Russell Eisenman - 2013 - Journal of Information Ethics 22 (1):8-10.
  10. The Logic of Chastity: Women, Sex, and the History of Philosophy in the Early Modern Period.Joan Gibson - 2006 - Hypatia 21 (4):1-19.
    Before women could become visible as philosophers, they had first to become visible as rational autonomous thinkers. A social and ethical position holding that chastity was the most important virtue for women, and that rationality and chastity were incompatible, was a significant impediment to accepting women's capacity for philosophical thought. Thus one of the first tasks for women was to confront this belief and argue for their rationality in the face of a self-referential dilemma.
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  11. The Logic of Chastity: Women, Sex, and the History of Philosophy in the Early Modern Period.Joan Gibson - 2001 - Hypatia 21 (4):1-19.
  12. Daddy Dilemmas: Untangling the Puzzles of Paternity.Donald C. Hubin - 2003 - Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy 13 (29):29-80.
    Though most children can easily answer the question, "Who's your daddy?", the concept of paternity is complex and multifaceted. Courts have stumbled in answering it. In order to ground paternal rights and obligations in a satisfactory way, we need to disaggregate the various elements of stereotypical paternity. It is not sufficient merely to separate social from biological paternity. The latter concept, itself, is complex. We need to separate the procreative element of paternity from the genetic relationship.
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  13. Realizing Love and Justice: Lesbian Ethics in the Upper and Lower Case.Kathleen Martindale & Martha Saunders - 1992 - Hypatia 7 (4):148 - 171.
    This essay examines two tendencies in lesbian ethics as differing visions of community, as well as contrasting views of the relationship between the erotic and the ethical. In addition to considering those authors who make explicit claims about lesbian ethics, this paper reflects on the works of some lesbians whose works are less frequently attended to in discussions about lesbian ethics, including lesbians writing from the perspectives of theology and of literature.
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  14. Confessions of a Frigid Man: A Philosopher's Journey Into the Hidden Layers of Men's Sexuality.Masahiro Morioka - 2017 - Tokyo Philosophy Project.
    "Confessions of a Frigid Man: A Philosopher’s Journey into the Hidden Layers of Men’s Sexuality" is the translation of a Japanese 2005 bestseller, "Kanjinai Otoko." Soon after the publication, this book stirred controversy over the nature of male sexuality, male “frigidity,” and its connection to the “Lolita complex.” Today, this work is considered a classic in Japanese men’s studies. -/- The most striking feature of this book is that it was written from the author’s first-person perspective. The author is a (...)
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  15. Sex and Social Justice.Martha C. Nussbaum - 1999 - Hypatia 17 (2):171-173.
  16. Warning! Contents Under Heterosexual Pressure.Peg O'Connor - 1997 - Hypatia 12 (3):183 - 188.
    This essay examines some stereotypes of bisexuals held by some lesbians. I argue that the decision that a lesbian makes not to become involved with a bisexual woman because she is bisexual can recenter men in lesbian desire, a consequence many lesbians would find deeply problematic. The acceptance of these stereotypes also results in sex becoming the defining characteristic of one's sexual orientation, thus privileging sex over any emotional, affectional, and political commitments to women.
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  17. Monogamy, Nonmonogamy, and Identity.Christine Overall - 1998 - Hypatia 13 (4):1 - 17.
    After a brief discussion of the terms "monogamy" and "nonmonogamy," I evaluate explanations offered by different theorists for the pain that nonmonogamy can cause to the partner (especially a female partner) of a nonmonogamous person (of either sex). My suggestion is that the self, especially the female self, is conventionally defined in terms of sexual partners. I present and reply to a possible objection to this explanation, and then discuss my theory's normative implications.
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  18. Adult Victim Consent in Situations of Sexual Exploitation in Pastoral Relationships.Ray Reid - 1999 - The Australasian Catholic Record 76 (1):74.
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  19. Celibacy and Its Implications For Autonomy.Candace Watson - 1987 - Hypatia 2 (2):157-158.
    This paper connects celibacy to autonomy, which is derived from economic, emotional, and sexual self-determination. Although society attempts to control and define women's sexuality, the celibate woman who masturbates can retrieve her sexuality without the massive social rearrangements which are necessary for economic and emotional liberation. Because masturbation is accessible and singular, sexual autonomy is available to a woman who chooses celibacy, regardless of the other exigencies in her life, as illustrated in the example here from popular literature.
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  20. Sexual Ethics in the Age of Epidemic.Iris Marion Young - 1993 - Hypatia 8 (3):184-193.
    In this essay I follow one argument strand from Linda Singer's Erotic Welfare. How can we have a forward-looking and affirmative ideal of sexual freedom when the AIDS panic has altered the sexual landscape and instigated new justifications for oppressive sexual disciplines? How can we be sexual subjects when processes of commodification and disciplinary practices have constrained sexual expression while proliferating sexual fetishes? These are some of the questions this book formulates, without answering.
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Ethical Theories and Sexual Ethics
  1. Sexual Ethics: A Christian View.Derrick Sherwin Bailey - unknown - New York: Macmillan.
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  2. Peripatetic Perversions.Dirk Baltzly - 2003 - The Monist 86 (1):3-29.
    I think that perversions, if there are any such things, are either sexual manifestations of various aspects of bad moral character or states that are psychologically inextricable from bad moral character. I am myself unsure whether there are any sexual perversions. In this paper, though, I have simply been concerned to argue that ordinary moral discourse has sufficient implicit teleology to allow talk of sexual perversions to be meaningful. It might yet turn out that there are none.
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  3. National Survey of Social Workers' Sexual Attraction to Their Clients: Results, Implications, and Comparison to Psychologists.Ann Bernsen, Barbara G. Tabachnick & Kenneth S. Pope - 1994 - Ethics and Behavior 4 (4):369 – 388.
    A survey form sent to psychologists (Pope, Keith-Spiegel, & Tabachnick, 1986) was adapted and sent to 1,000 clinical social workers (return rate = 45%). Most participants reported sexual attraction to a client, causing (for most) guilt, anxiety, or confusion. Some reported having sexual fantasies about a client while engaging in sex with someone other than a client. Relatively few (3.6% men; 0.5% women) reported sex with a client; training was related to likelihood of offending, though the effect is small and (...)
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  4. Constructing the Erotic: Sexual Ethics and Adolescent Girls.Barbara J. Blodgett - 2002 - Pilgrim Press.
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  5. Violence, Power, and Justice: A Feminist Contribution to Christian Sexual Ethics.Sólveig Anna Bóasdóttir - 1998 - Academia Upsaliensis.
  6. Amoris laetitia, à la lumière de la clarté.Tristan Casabianca - manuscript
    L’exhortation apostolique Amoris laetitia contient de nombreuses ambiguïtés, notamment concernant l’accès à la communion des divorcés civilement remariés, dont elle refuse de trancher explicitement la question à la lumière de la doctrine de l’Eglise Catholique. Ce manque de clarté est préjudiciable. Il est susceptible d’être utilisé à l’encontre du Magistère. Il est également révélateur d’une approche philosophique occidentale marquée par l’individualisme et le relativisme. Or cette approche est de plus en plus contestée par l’actuelle « révolution conservatrice ».
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  7. Robotic Rape and Robotic Child Sexual Abuse: Should They Be Criminalised?John Danaher - 2017 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 11 (1):71-95.
    Soon there will be sex robots. The creation of such devices raises a host of social, legal and ethical questions. In this article, I focus in on one of them. What if these sex robots are deliberately designed and used to replicate acts of rape and child sexual abuse? Should the creation and use of such robots be criminalised, even if no person is harmed by the acts performed? I offer an argument for thinking that they should be. The argument (...)
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  8. Sex and the Virtuous Kantian Agent.Lara Denis - 2006 - In Raja Halwani (ed.), Sex and Ethics: Essays in Sexuality, Virtue, and the Good Life. Palgrave-Macmillan.
    This paper explores how a virtuous Kantian agent would regard and express her sexuality. I argue both that Kant has a rich account of virtue, and that a virtuous Kantian agent should view her sexuality as a good thing–as an important aspect of her animal nature. On my view, the virtuous agent does not seek to suppress her sexuality, but rather to find modes and contexts for its expression that allow the agent to maintain her self-respect and to avoid degrading (...)
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  9. Fathers and Abortion.Ezio Di Nucci - 2014 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 39 (4):444-458.
    I argue that it is possible for prospective mothers to wrong prospective fathers by bearing their child; and that lifting paternal liability for child support does not correct the wrong inflicted to fathers. It is therefore sometimes wrong for prospective mothers to bear a child, or so I argue here. I show that my argument for considering the legitimate interests of prospective fathers is not a unique exception to an obvious right to procreate. It is, rather, part of a growing (...)
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  10. Criticising Religious Practices.Brian D. Earp - 2013 - The Philosophers' Magazine 63:15-17.
    In 2012, a German court ruled that religious circumcision of male minors constitutes criminal bodily assault. Muslim and Jewish groups responded with outrage, with some commentators pegging the ruling to Islamophobic and anti-Semitic motivations. In doing so, these commentators failed to engage with any of the legal and ethical arguments actually given by the court in its landmark decision. In this brief commentary, I argue that a firm distinction must be drawn between criticisms of religious practices that stem from irrational (...)
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  11. Natural Selection, Childrearing, and the Ethics of Marriage (and Divorce): Building a Case for the Neuroenhancement of Human Relationships. [REVIEW]Brian D. Earp, Anders Sandberg & Julian Savulescu - 2012 - Philosophy and Technology 25 (4):561-587.
    We argue that the fragility of contemporary marriages—and the corresponding high rates of divorce—can be explained (in large part) by a three-part mismatch: between our relationship values, our evolved psychobiological natures, and our modern social, physical, and technological environment. “Love drugs” could help address this mismatch by boosting our psychobiologies while keeping our values and our environment intact. While individual couples should be free to use pharmacological interventions to sustain and improve their romantic connection, we suggest that they may have (...)
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  12. Temperance and Sexual Ethics.Raja Halwani - 2011 - In Adrianne Leigh McEvoy (ed.), Sex, Love, and Friendship: Studies of the Society for the Philosophy of Sex and Love: 1993-2003. Rodopi.
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  13. Sex and Ethics: Essays in Sexuality, Virtue, and the Good Life.Raja Halwani (ed.) - 2006 - Palgrave-Macmillan.
  14. The Ethics of Sexual Fantasy.Jeffrey Hershfield - 2009 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 23 (1):27-49.
    I defend the thesis that a person’s sexual fantasies function autonomously from his desires, beliefs, and intentions, a fact I attributeto their different forms of intentionality: the contents of sexual fantasies, unlike those of the latter, lack a direction of fit and thus fail to express satisfaction conditions. I then show how the autonomy thesis helps to answer important questions about the ethics of sexual fantasy. I also argue that the autonomy thesis can claim empirical support from several areas, including (...)
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  15. Sexual Disorientation: Moral Implications of Gender Norms.Peter Higgins - 2005 - In Lisa Gurley, Claudia Leeb & Anna Aloisia Moser (eds.), Feminists Contest Politics and Philosophy. PIE - Peter Lang.
    This paper argues that participating exclusively or predominantly in heterosexual romantic or sexual relationships is prima facie morally impermissible. It holds that this conclusion follows from three premises: (1) gender norms are on-balance harmful; (2) conforming to harmful social norms is prima facie morally impermissible; and (3) participating exclusively or predominantly in heterosexual romantic or sexual relationships is a way of conforming to gender norms.
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  16. Comment on Tapley's "What is Wrong with Being a Pervert".David L. Hildebrand - 2009 - Southwest Philosophy Review 25 (2):51-56.
    Comment upon Tapley's thesis. Tapley: Defining perversion as "sexual acts that harm" (2) Tapley argues that any harmful act with a sexual dimension constitutes a distinct "harm of it's own." Sexual harms are morally worse than harms which, prima facie, might appear morally equivalent: rape is worse than stabbing and molestation is worse than severe bullying due to their sexual dimension. Sexual harms undermine us more seriously than non-sexual harms because of their effects on what Tapley names three "sovereignty interests" (...)
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  17. Comment on Tapley's "What is Wrong With Being a Pervert?".David L. Hildebrand - 2009 - Southwest Philosophy Review 25 (2):51-56.
    Comment on Robin Tapley's paper on whether or not the sexual aspect of sexual harms adds anything to the harm done. I argue it does not based on the grounds Tapley provides.
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  18. Consenting Adults, Sex, and Natural Law Theory.Timothy Hsiao - 2016 - Philosophia 43:1-21.
    This paper argues for the superiority of natural law theory over consent -based approaches to sexual morality. I begin by criticizing the “consenting adults” sexual ethic that is dominant in contemporary Western culture. I then argue that natural law theory provides a better account of sexual morality. In particular, I will defend the “perverted faculty argument”, according to which it is immoral to use one’s bodily faculties contrary to their proper end.
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  19. A Defense of the Perverted Faculty Argument Against Homosexual Sex.Timothy Hsiao - 2015 - Heythrop Journal 56 (5):751-758.
    Critics of homosexual activity often appeal to some form of natural law theory as a basis for their arguments. According to one version of natural law theory, actions that “pervert” or misuse a bodily faculty are immoral. In this paper, I argue that this “perverted faculty argument” provides a successful account of good and evil action. Several objections are assessed and found inadequate.
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  20. New Directions in Sexual Ethics: Moral Theology and the Challenge of Aids.Kevin T. Kelly - 1998 - G. Champman.
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  21. Just Love: A Framework for Sexual Ethics. By Margaret A. Farley.Alexander Lucie-Smith - 2008 - Heythrop Journal 49 (3):499–500.
  22. Sex and Virtue: An Introduction to Sexual Ethics. By John S. Grabowski.Alexander Lucie-Smith - 2007 - Heythrop Journal 48 (3):481–483.
  23. God, Sex and War.Donald MacKenzie MacKinnon (ed.) - 1965 - Philadelphia: Westminster Press.
    Ethical problems of nuclear warfare, by D. M. MacKinnon.-Ethical problems of sex, by H. Root.-Personal relations before marriage, by H. Montefiore.-Conduct and faith, by J. Burnaby.
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  24. O que há de errado com a pornografia?Lucas Miotto - 2013 - Fundamento 1 (4):109-123.
    My aim in this essay is to show that some of the arguments usually offered by the feminist movements and conservatists against the pornography are not sound, and so, are not sufficient to hold that pornography is morally wrong.
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  25. HOMOSEXUALITY IN FRIEDRICK NIETZSCHE's MORAL RELATIVISM.Onyenuru OkechukwuP - manuscript
  26. Sidgwick and the Morality of Purity.Francesco Orsi - 2012 - Revue d'Etudes Benthamiennes 10 (10).
    The aim of this work is to bring analytically to light Sidgwick’s complex views on sexual morality. Sidgwick saw nothing intrinsically, self-evidently, and even derivatively wrong in getting sexual pleasure for its own sake. However, the overall consequences of attempting to modify common sense in matters of sexual ethics seemed to him to be worse, at his time, than retaining the moral category of purity. Sidgwick’s view is then contrasted with John Stuart Mill’s, whom he directly mentions in this connection. (...)
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  27. Sexual Ethics: The Meaning and Foundations of Sexual Morality – Aurel Kolnai. [REVIEW]Catherine Osborne - 2008 - Philosophical Quarterly 58 (231):377–379.
  28. Christian Sexual Ethics and Teleological Organicity.Alexander Pruss - 2000 - The Thomist 64 (1):71-100.
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  29. The Moral Considerations Affecting Sex Education in the Primary School.J. F. Risby - 1973 - Journal of Moral Education 3 (1):325-343.
  30. Good Sex on Kantian Grounds, or A Reply to Alan Soble.Joshua Schulz - 2007 - Essays in Philosophy 8 (2):13.
    Immanuel Kant offers definitions of “sexual desire” and “sexual use” in the Metaphysics of Morals that occasion an inconsistency within his moral system, for they entail that sexual desire, as a natural inclination that is conditionally good, is also categorically objectifying, and thus per se immoral according to the second formulation of the Categorical Imperative. Following Alan Soble, various attempts to resolve the inconsistency are here criticized before more suitable, and suitably Kantian, definitions of these terms are offered. It is (...)
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