The Double Failure of 'Double Effect'

In Christoph Lumer & Sandro Nannini (eds.), Intentionality, Deliberation, and Autonomy. Ashgate (2007)
The ‘doctrine of double effect’ claims that it is in some sense morally less problematic to bring about a negatively evaluated state of affairs as a ‘side effect’ of one’s pursuit of another, morally unobjectionable aim than it is to bring it about in order to achieve that aim. In a first step, this chapter discusses the descriptive difference on which the claim is built. That difference is shown to derive from the attitudinal distinction between intention and ‘acceptance’, a distinction that is in turn claimed to ground in a feature of the decisions that generate the attitudes in question. The resulting analysis is then plugged into two different normative principles that may each be thought to specify the intuitions behind the doctrine of double effect, but which have frequently been conflated. The first concerns the permissibility of bringing about the merely accepted state of affairs, the second its reduced attributability. It is argued that examination of the intuitions behind the two principles supports neither version of the doctrine. Rather, the intuitions are best captured in an attribution principle based on subjective probabilities and a principle of attitude evaluation, neither of which make explicit reference to the attitude of intending.
Keywords double effect  intention  normative ethics
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Translate to english
Download options
Our Archive
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Intention and Responsibility in Double Effect Cases.David K. Chan - 2000 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 3 (4):405-434.
Who is Entitled to Double Effect?Joseph Boyle - 1991 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 16 (5):475-494.
Intentions, Motives and the Doctrine of Double Effect.Lawrence Masek - 2010 - Philosophical Quarterly 60 (240):567-585.
The Contralife Argument and the Principle of Double Effect.Lawrence Masek - 2011 - National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly 11 (1):83-97.
Four Versions of Double Effect.Donald B. Marquis - 1991 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 16 (5):515-544.
Double Effect, Double Intention, and Asymmetric Warfare.Steven Lee - 2004 - Journal of Military Ethics 3 (3):233-251.
Neuroethics: A New Way of Doing Ethics.Neil Levy - 2011 - AJOB Neuroscience 2 (2):3-9.
Embryo Loss and Double Effect.Ezio Di Nucci - 2013 - Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (8):537-540.
Added to PP index

Total downloads
195 ( #22,447 of 2,180,053 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
23 ( #10,001 of 2,180,053 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums