Choosing Life, Choosing Death: The Tyranny of Autonomy in by Charles Foster

By Charles Foster

Autonomy is a crucial precept in clinical legislation and ethics which occupies a renowned position in all medico-legal and moral debate. yet there's a harmful presumption that it may have the single vote, or at the least the casting vote. This booklet is an attack on that presumption, and an audit of autonomy's notable prestige. deciding on existence, opting for demise surveys the most matters in scientific legislations, noting, on the subject of each one factor, the ability wielded via autonomy, asking no matter if that energy could be justified, and suggesting how different rules can and may give a contribution to the legislation. The book's constitution is widely chronological. It begins prior to beginning - with questions on the subject of reproductive expertise and the possession of gametes - and ends after demise - with the problems when it comes to the possession of physique components. at the method, it bargains with the prestige of the early embryo and the fetus, the legislations of abortion, confidentiality, consent, scientific litigation, scientific study, and end-of-life decision-making. settling on lifestyles, deciding upon loss of life concludes that autonomy's prestige can't be intellectually or ethically justified, and that confident discrimination in prefer of the opposite balancing rules is urgently wanted that allows you to stay away from a few sinister effects. There are few books which take a pro-life and anti-autonomy stance. it is a arguable topic that may galvanize debate between students, judges, and practitioners. Authored through Charles Foster, a greatly revered pupil who has written generally during this region, determining existence, identifying demise is a fascinating, realized, and thought-provoking dialogue of the issues critical to the courts' method of moral matters in scientific legislations.

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Additional info for Choosing Life, Choosing Death: The Tyranny of Autonomy in Medical Ethics and Law

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6 Many have recruited philosophy as an ally in the feminist war, seeing it as a potent weapon against the paternalism that has often characterised medicine and other areas of life: see, eg, Jackson E (2001) Regulating Reproduction (Oxford, Hart Publishing) ch 1. 3 Principles This is the orthodoxy, and it is policed with terrifying vigour. To depart from it is dangerous. It is like standing up at a meeting of the Royal Society and announcing that you are a New Earth Creationist who thinks that Darwin got his orders directly from Satan.

For the purpose of terminating a pregnancy.

This is at the higher appellate levels, and notably in the House of Lords. This is when the journals are dusted off and cited. The Law Lords feel a need to articulate principles, rather than just making a right judgment in the particular case, and that is when things start to go wrong. It is then that they start to try to be philosophers. They are all very clever, and most of them did a course in jurisprudence half a century earlier, but they have no real philosophical sense of smell, and they have very little time to consider the full philosophical fallout of their dicta: the next case about marine insurance is waiting at the door.

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