Chapter

Family, Ancestry, and Self

Sally Haslanger

in Resisting Reality

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780199892631
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199980055 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199892631.003.0005
Family, Ancestry, and Self

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This chapter argues against an argument one might take from David Velleman's chapter, “Family History,” that acquaintance with one's biological progenitors is important for human well-being—unless there are outweighing considerations. In contexts where such knowledge is highly valued, those without it may be stigmatized and their well-being diminished. So although it may be important to provide, as far as possible, information about one's biological progenitors and even to consider this a right, it is also important to question the value of acquaintance with biological progenitors and to acknowledge the importance of fictive kinship, alloparenting, and other social resources in all of our lives.

Keywords: family; acquaintance; adoption; birthfamily; biological family; well-being; kinship; gamete donation; social construction; David Velleman

Chapter.  12019 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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