The Ethics of Suicide

Dissertation, University of Miami (1993)
Abstract
Ethical issues raised by suicide are considered in this work. Chapter 1 concerns the analysis of the concept of suicide. It is found that suicide must be defined by reference to the agent's intentions. Chapters 2 and 3 focus on anti-suicide arguments. It is found that none of these arguments shows that suicide is always wrong, though they do show that other-regarding factors must be considered when estimating the moral status of suicide. Chapter 4 presents the view that, given certain rights, suicide is permissible in certain kinds of circumstances, and the permissibility of suicide is limited only by duties to others. It is also shown that duties to others may make suicide morally obligatory. Finally, the role which others should play in suicide is discussed in Chapter 5
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