Norvin Richards

in The Ethics of Parenthood

Published in print August 2010 | ISBN: 9780199731749
Published online September 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780199866311 | DOI:

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The conclusion serves to identify themes in the account given of the ethics of parenthood. All are ways in which the proper relationship between parent and child is greatly shaped by the right to have one's autonomy respected and by what love calls for a person to do. The right to have one's autonomy respected is said to underlie a biological parent's strong claim to keep his or her children and raise them; implications are noted for cases including those of Baby Jessica and Baby Richard. Other chapters argue that raising a child as one should is also largely shaped by respect for autonomy and that we have an obligation to love our children at this stage of life but none to love them when they are grown. Finally, an account is given of what love and respect for autonomy have to do with the relationship parents should have with their grown children.

Keywords: ethics of parenthood; parents; children; autonomy; love; biological parents; parental rights; Baby Jessica; raising children; grown children

Chapter.  5253 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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