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Analyse & Kritik

Journal of Philosophy and Social Theory

Ed. by Baurmann, Michael / Leist, Anton / Tranow, Ulf

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Volume 12, Issue 2


Utilitaristische Ethik und Tötungsverbot

Zu Peter Singers ‚Praktische Ethik‘

Dieter Birnbacher
Published Online: 2016-05-12 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/auk-1990-0207


One of the standard criticisms of classical utilitarian is that it is unable to provide an adequate ethical foundation for the wrongness of killing. It is reasoned that the five arguments against killing available to the classical utilitarian are indeed sufficient to provide such a foundation and that recourse to preference utilitarianism is neither called for nor helpful since it generates a number of problems of its own. On this basis, Singer’s discussion of selective abortion and the selective euthanasia of newborns is criticized from within utilitarianism for not giving sufficient weight to direct and indirect social side-effects, especially if ‘external’ criteria are introduced into the valuation of human life.

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Published Online: 2016-05-12

Published in Print: 1990-11-01

Citation Information: Analyse & Kritik, Volume 12, Issue 2, Pages 205–218, ISSN (Online) 2365-9858, ISSN (Print) 0171-5860, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/auk-1990-0207.

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© 1990 by Lucius & Lucius, Stuttgart.

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