Pregnancy, Parthood and Proper Overlap: A Critique of Kingma

Philosophical Quarterly 73 (2):476-491 (2023)
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Elselijn Kingma argues that, in cases of mammalian placental pregnancy, the foster (roughly, the post-implantation embryo/foetus) is part of the gravida (the pregnant organism). But she does not consider the possibility of proper overlap. I show that this generates a number of serious problems for her argument and trace the oversight to a quite general issue within the literature on biological individuality. Doing so provides an opportunity to pull apart and clarify the relations between some importantly distinct questions concerning organismality and organismic parthood, and to identify the implications that this has for those who want to draw on this literature when making metaphysical or mereological arguments.

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Alexander Geddes
University of Oxford

Citations of this work

Human equality arguments against abortion.Calum Miller - 2023 - Journal of Medical Ethics 49 (8):569-572.
Pregnant Thinkers.David Mark Kovacs - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.
Cogito, Ergo Sumus? The Pregnancy Problem in Descartes's Philosophy.Maja Sidzińska - 2023 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 13 (2).

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References found in this work

Parts : a Study in Ontology.Peter Simons - 1987 - Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale 2:277-279.
Were You a Part of Your Mother?Elselijn Kingma - 2019 - Mind 128 (511):609-646.
What Is Epistemic Public Trust in Science?Gürol Irzık & Faik Kurtulmuş - 2019 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 70 (4):1145-1166.
Parts: A Study in Ontology.Peter Simons - 1988 - Mind 97 (388):638-640.

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