Permissible Progeny? contributes to the growing literature on the morality of procreation and parenting. About half of the chapters take up questions about the morality of bringing children into existence. They discuss the following questions: Is it wrong to create human life? Is there a connection between the problem of evil and the morality of procreation? Could there be a duty to procreate? How do the environmental harms imposed by procreation affect its moral status? Given these costs, is the value of establishing genetic ties ever significant enough to render procreation morally permissible? And how should government respond to peoples' motives for procreating?
The other half of Permissible Progeny? considers moral and political questions about adoption and parenting. One chapter considers whether the choice to become a parent can be rational. The two following chapters take up the regulation of adoption, focusing on whether the special burdens placed on adoptive parents, as compared to biological parents, can be morally justified. Permissible Progeny? concludes by considering how we should conceive of adequacy standards in parenting and what resources we owe to children.
This collection builds on existing literature by advancing new arguments and novel perspectives on existing debates. It also raises new issues deserving of our attention. As a whole it is sure to generate further philosophical debate on pressing and rich questions surrounding the bearing and rearing of children.
Introduction: On The Morality of Procreation and Parenting (Sarah Hannan)
Chapter 1 The Misanthropic Argument for Anti-natalism (David Benatar)
Chapter 2 Procreative Ethics and the Problem of Evil (Jason Marsh)
Chapter 3 Could There Ever Be a Duty to Have Children? (Anca Gheaus)
Chapter 4 Procreation or Appropriation? (Corey MacIver)
Chapter 5 Creation Theory: Do Genetic Ties Matter? (Elizabeth Brake)
Chapter 6 Do Motives Matter? On the Political Relevance of Procreative Reasons (Steven Lecce and Erik Magnusson)
Chapter 7 We Can Make Rational Decisions to Have a Child: On the Grounds for Rejecting L.A. Paul's Arguments (Meena Krishnamurthy)
Chapter 8 Can a Right to Reproduce Justify the Status Quo on Parental Licensing? (Andrew Botterell and Carolyn McLeod)
Chapter 9 Privileging Adoption over Sexual Reproduction? A State-Centered Perspective (Jurgen deWispelaere and Daniel Weinstock)
Chapter 10 Parental Competency and the Right to Parent (Colin MacLeod)
Chapter 11 How Much Do We Owe to Children? (Matthew Clayton)
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Sarah Hannan is Assistant Professor of Political Studies at the University of Manitoba.
Samantha Brennan is Professor of Philosophy at Western University and co-editor of Philosophy and Death (Broadview, 2009) and The Broadview Anthology of Social and Political Thought (Broadview, three volumes, 2008-2012).
Richard Vernon is Distinguished University Professor at Western University and author of Cosmopolitan Regard (Cambridge, 2010) and Historical Redress (Bloomsbury, 2012).