The Human Dignity of Embryos?

Anja J. Karnein

in A Theory of Unborn Life

Published in print June 2012 | ISBN: 9780199782475
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199933297 | DOI:
The Human Dignity of Embryos?

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This chapter explores to what extent the Personhood Dependent Principle (PDP) as it is developed in Chapter One is an attractive principle for a country such as Germany, with strong constitutional protections of the embryo. A closer look at the various laws and practices reveals, however, that only some embryos are protected in Germany. The reasons for distinguishing between embryos that are protected and embryos that are not, fail to be convincing. Rather, they express a lack of respect for women and a problematic privileging of traditional family values. Thus, this chapter shows that the Personhood Dependent Principle is both a viable and attractive principle to adopt for law and policy makers as it would help make the Germany position on the embryo’s moral value more coherent.

Keywords: German embryo protection; German Constitutional Court; abortion; German Law for the Protection of Embryos; stem cell law; family values; role of women; prenatal injury cases; fetal manslaughter laws

Chapter.  9324 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

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