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abortion, virtue ethics
My goal here is to consider what contemporary virtue ethics can say about the problem of abortion. I begin by outlining virtue ethics in comparison to the two other dominant approaches in normative ethics. I then consider what some important virtue ethicists have said about abortion, especially the work of Rosalind Hursthouse. After recognizing the many contributions her analysis offers, I also note some of the deficiencies in her approach, particularly in her attempt to bracket the problems of fetal status and women’s rights. Finally, in light of these criticisms I attempt to extend a virtue ethics analysis to embrace a more robust recognition of the humanity of the fetus and the attendant demand of a near absolute prohibition on abortion.
Stephen Napier (Ed.), Persons, moral worth and embryos: A critical analysis of pro-choice arguments from philosophy, law, and science
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