Theology and Medicine

Contingent Future Persons

On the Ethics of Deciding Who Will Live, or Not, in the Future

Editors: Fotion, N., Heller, J.C. (Eds.)

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About this book

How ought we evaluate the individual and collective actions on which the existence, numbers and identities of future people depend? In the briefest of terms, this question poses what is addressed here as the problem of contingent future persons, and as such it poses relatively novel challenges for philosophical and theological ethicists. For though it may be counter-intuitive, it seems that those contingent future persons who are actually brought into existence by such actions cannot benefit from or be harmed by these actions in any conventional sense of the terms. This intriguing problem was defined almost three decades ago by Jan Narveson [2], and to date its implications have been explored most exhaustively by Derek Parfit [3] and David Heyd [1]. Nevertheless, as yet there is simply no consensus on how we ought to evaluate such actions or, indeed, on whether we can. Still, the pursuit of a solution to the problem has been interestingly employed by moral philosophers to press the limits of ethics and to urge a reconsideration of the nature and source of value at its most fundamental level. It is thus proving to be a very fruitful investigation, with far-reaching theoretical and practical implications.

Table of contents (14 chapters)

Table of contents (14 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $109.00
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-94-011-5566-3
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase and usable on all devices
  • Bulk discounts available
Hardcover $179.99
price for USA in USD
Softcover $149.99
price for USA in USD
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Contingent Future Persons
Book Subtitle
On the Ethics of Deciding Who Will Live, or Not, in the Future
Editors
  • N. Fotion
  • J.C. Heller
Series Title
Theology and Medicine
Series Volume
9
Copyright
1997
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
eBook ISBN
978-94-011-5566-3
DOI
10.1007/978-94-011-5566-3
Hardcover ISBN
978-0-7923-4707-1
Softcover ISBN
978-94-010-6345-6
Series ISSN
0928-8783
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
VII, 216
Topics