Skip to main navigationSkip to main content
The University of Southampton
Southampton Ethics Centre

HEAL Seminar - 'Harming your foetus: Pregnancy and difficult deontological distinctions' Event

10 February 2016
Building 4 Room 4051 - Highfield Campus, University of Southampton

For more information regarding this event, please email Elselijn Kingma at .

Event details

According to common-sense morality and the law, there are much stronger constraints against doing harm than merely allowing harm or failing to benefit: doing harm is much harder to justify than merely allowing harm or failing to benefit; other things being equal, someone who does harm is seen as deserving much more blame and guilt than someone who merely allows harm; we can interfere to stop a person doing harm in a way that we could not interfere to prevent someone merely allowing harm. Mothers and pregnant women who fail to act in the best interests of their children are often treated as doing harm to others, rather than merely allowing harm or failing to benefit - and subjected to the kinds of blame, guilt and interference that go with doing harm. However, we argue that the distinction between doing and allowing does not apply easily in pregnancy.

Speaker information

Elselijn Kingma,Department of Philosophy

Fiona Woollard,Department of Philosophy

Privacy Settings