The deprivation argument against abortion

Bioethics 18 (2):144–180 (2004)

Abstract
The most plausible pro-life argument claims that abortion is seriously wrong because it deprives the foetus of something valuable. This paper examines two recent versions of this argument. Don Marquis's version takes the valuable thing to be a 'future like ours', a future containing valuable experiences and activities. Jim Stone's version takes the valuable thing to be a future containing conscious goods, which it is the foetus's biological nature to make itself have. I give three grounds for rejecting these arguments. First, they lead to unacceptable inequalities in the wrongness of killing. Second, they lead to counterintuitive results in a range of imaginary cases. Third, they ignore the role of psychological connectedness in determining the magnitude or seriousness of deprivation-based harms: because the foetus is only weakly psychologically connected to its own future, it cannot be seriously harmed by being deprived of that future
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DOI 10.1111/j.1467-8519.2004.00386.x
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References found in this work BETA

Why Potentiality Matters.Jim Stone - 1987 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 17 (4):815-829.
Killing and Equality.Jeff McMahan - 1995 - Utilitas 7 (1):1-29.
Thought Experiments and Personal Identity.Stephen R. Coleman - 2000 - Philosophical Studies 98 (1):51-66.
Why Potentiality Still Matters.Jim Stone - 1994 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 24 (2):281 - 293.

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Citations of this work BETA

A Critique of “the Best Secular Argument Against Abortion”.C. Strong - 2008 - Journal of Medical Ethics 34 (10):727-731.
Strong's Objections to the Future of Value Account.Don Marquis - 2011 - Journal of Medical Ethics 37 (6):384-388.
An Alleged Contradiction in Nozick's Entitlement Theory.Anna-Karin M. Andersson - 2007 - Journal of Libertarian Studies 21 (3):43-63.

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Deprivation and the See-Saw of Death.Christopher Wareham - 2009 - South African Journal of Philosophy 28 (2):246-56.

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