Moral Status and Human Life: The Case for Children's Superiority

J. Dwyer, Moral Status and Human Life: The Case for Children's Superiority, Cambridge University Press, October 2010

William & Mary Law School Research Paper No. 09-217

12 Pages Posted: 8 Nov 2012

Date Written: 2010

Abstract

This book develops a comprehensive theory of moral status, responding to the disparate partial accounts offered by animal rights proponents, environmental theorists, Kantians, and care ethicists and drawing from a naturalistic account of human moral psychology. It generates a multi-variable, sliding-scale rubric of moral status. It then applies the theory and rubric to do a rough comparison of the moral status of adults and children. It concludes, contrary to the historically prevailing view, that children occupy a higher moral status and so should receive greater consideration than adults in our moral and political deliberations. Finally, the book suggests some applications to current legal and policy debates.

Keywords: children's rights, moral status, human life, abortion, autonomy, sentience

Suggested Citation

Dwyer, James Gerard, Moral Status and Human Life: The Case for Children's Superiority (2010). J. Dwyer, Moral Status and Human Life: The Case for Children's Superiority, Cambridge University Press, October 2010; William & Mary Law School Research Paper No. 09-217. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2168964

James Gerard Dwyer (Contact Author)

William & Mary Law School ( email )

South Henry Street
P.O. Box 8795
Williamsburg, VA 23187-8795
United States

HOME PAGE: http://law2.wm.edu/faculty/bios/fulltime/dwyer-648.php

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