A Kantian ethics approach to moral bioenhancement

Bioethics 31 (9):683-690 (2017)

Authors
Sarah Carter-Walshaw
University of Leeds
Abstract
It seems, at first glance, that a Kantian ethics approach to moral enhancement would tend towards the position that there could be no place for emotional modulation in any understanding of the endeavour, owing to the typically understood view that Kantian ethics does not allow any role for emotion in morality as a whole. It seems then that any account of moral bioenhancement which places emotion at its centre would therefore be rejected. This article argues, however, that this assumption is incorrect. Given later writings by Kant on the role of sympathy, and taking into account other concerns in Kantian ethics, it may in fact be the case that Kantian ethics would allow for an account of moral bioenhancement through emotional modulation, and that in some cases such an intervention might even be considered to be a duty.
Keywords Kantian ethics  empathy  enhancement  moral bioenhancement  moral enhancement
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DOI 10.1111/bioe.12380
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