Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Virtue Ethics, Bioethics, and the Ownership of Biological Material
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9984-7831
2008 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

The overall aim of this thesis is to show how some ideas in Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics can be interpreted and used as a productive way to approach a number of pressing issues in bioethics. Articles I-II introduce, and endorse, a social constructivist perspective on rights (as opposed to the more traditional natural rights idea). It is investigated if the existence of property-like rights to biological material would include the moral right to commodification and even commercialisation. Articles III-V discuss similar questions and more specifically champion the application of an Aristotelian virtue ethics perspective. The articles are preceded by an introductory essay on some of the central themes in the Nicomachean Ethics. This section also includes a very brief account of what the connection between virtue ethics and a theory of social construction, including rights, could look like. The thesis seeks to show that if read somewhat creatively many of the ideas in the Nicomachean Ethics make for a highly useful approach to modern moral problems. It should be noted, however, that this thesis in no way claims to be an exegetic, or a complete, study of the Nicomachean Ethics.

Article I deals with ownership of biological material from a philosophical, as opposed to a legal, perspective. It is argued that a strand in liberal political theory that treats property relations as socially constructed bundles of rights, as developed by e.g. Felix Cohen and Tony Honoré, is well suited for discussions on ownership of biological material.

Article II investigates which differences in biological material might motivate differences in treatment and ownership rights. The article draws on the social constructivist theory of ownership which was developed in Article I.

Article III employs virtue ethics to explain why it is morally permissible to donate but not to sell organs such as kidneys. It is suggested that the former action will bring the agent closer to a state of human flourishing.

Article IV argues that virtues like philia, justice, beneficence and generosity — traditionally all seen as other-regarding — contain strong self-regarding aspects. The central claim is that these self-regarding aspects of the other-regarding virtues are necessary components of complete virtue and thus that the fully virtuous agent has to act virtuously both in her dealings with herself and others.

Article V applies the ideas that were developed in Article IV to the case of living organ donations to next of kin. It is proposed that such an act, although noble and fine, is supererogatory, rather than obligatory, as the donor is morally entitled to be partial to herself. This argument is made against the backdrop of a discussion on some Aristotelian ideas on philia and partiality.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH , 2008. , viii, 121 p.
Series
Theses in philosophy from the Royal Institute of Technology, ISSN 1650-8831
Keyword [en]
Biological material, ownership, rights, organ, donation, property, commodification, kidney, virtue ethics, natural rights, transplantation, transplant, social organisation
National Category
Philosophy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-4814ISBN: 978-91-7178-993-8 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-4814DiVA: diva2:14109
Public defence
2008-08-27, Sal F3, KTH, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 10:00
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20100709Available from: 2008-06-09 Created: 2008-06-09 Last updated: 2010-07-09Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Bodily Rights and Property Rights
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Bodily Rights and Property Rights
2006 (English)In: Journal of Medical Ethics, ISSN 0306-6800, E-ISSN 1473-4257, Vol. 32, no 4, 209-214 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Whereas previous discussions on ownership of biological material have been much informed by the natural rights tradition, insufficient attention has been paid to the strand in liberal political theory represented by Felix Cohen, Tony Honore, and others, which treats property relations as socially constructed bundles of rights. In accordance with that tradition, we propose that the primary normative issue is what combination of rights a person should have to a particular item of biological material. Whether that bundle qualifies to be called `` property'' or `` ownership'' is a secondary, terminological issue. We suggest five principles of bodily rights and show how they can be applied to the construction of ethically appropriate bundles of rights to biological material.

Keyword
human tissue, biobanks, commodification, ethics
National Category
Philosophy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-8710 (URN)10.1136/jme.2004.011270 (DOI)000236406800006 ()2-s2.0-33645759522 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100708Available from: 2008-06-09 Created: 2008-06-09 Last updated: 2010-11-24Bibliographically approved
2. Different Types, Different Rights: Distinguishing Between Different Perspectives on Ownership of Biological Material
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Different Types, Different Rights: Distinguishing Between Different Perspectives on Ownership of Biological Material
2007 (English)In: Science and Engineering Ethics, ISSN 1353-3452, E-ISSN 1471-5546, Vol. 13, no 2, 221-233 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Drawing on a social construction theory of ownership in biological material this paper discusses which differences in biological material might motivate differences in treatment and ownership rights. The analysis covers both the perspective of the person from whom the material originates and that of the potential recipient. Seven components of bundles of rights, drawing on the analytical tradition of Tony Honore, and their relationship to various types of biological material are investigated. To exemplify these categories the cases of a heart, a kidney, stem cells and hair are used.

Keyword
biological material; rights; ownership; commodification; commercialization; PROPERTY; BIOBANKS; COMMODIFICATION; CREATIONS; ETHICS; TISSUE
National Category
Philosophy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-8711 (URN)10.1007/s11948-007-9005-x (DOI)000249586700008 ()2-s2.0-34548711937 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100708Available from: 2008-06-09 Created: 2008-06-09 Last updated: 2010-11-24Bibliographically approved
3. Why We are Not Allowed to Sell that Which We are Encouraged to Donate
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Why We are Not Allowed to Sell that Which We are Encouraged to Donate
2006 (English)In: Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, ISSN 0963-1801, E-ISSN 1469-2147, Vol. 15, no 1, 60-70 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Keyword
Analytical Approach; commodification; donor; economics; ethical theory; ethics; Health Care and Public Health; human; morality; organ transplantation; review; transplantation; Tissue and Organ Procurement; Tissue Donors; Virtues
National Category
Philosophy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-8712 (URN)10.1017/S0963180106060075 (DOI)000234926500007 ()16529308 (PubMedID)2-s2.0-33644910480 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100708Available from: 2008-06-09 Created: 2008-06-09 Last updated: 2011-11-08Bibliographically approved
4. On the Necessary Self-regarding Aspects of Other-regarding Virtues
Open this publication in new window or tab >>On the Necessary Self-regarding Aspects of Other-regarding Virtues
(English)Article in journal (Other academic) Submitted
National Category
Philosophy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-8713 (URN)
Note
QC 20100709Available from: 2008-06-09 Created: 2008-06-09 Last updated: 2010-07-09Bibliographically approved
5. Why Organ Donation from the Living is a Supererogatory Act: A Discussion on Philia and the Moral Right to Favour Oneself
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Why Organ Donation from the Living is a Supererogatory Act: A Discussion on Philia and the Moral Right to Favour Oneself
(English)Article in journal (Other academic) Submitted
National Category
Philosophy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-8714 (URN)
Note
QC 20100709Available from: 2008-06-09 Created: 2008-06-09 Last updated: 2010-07-09Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

fulltext(1045 kB)1116 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 1045 kBChecksum MD5
f8a095250b2840716c86170ad7dcdbfc4b8a2e5f002a8817408894836ce1a7c49754b25a
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

Authority records BETA

Björkman, Barbro

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Björkman, Barbro
By organisation
Philosophy
Philosophy

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 1116 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

isbn
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

isbn
urn-nbn
Total: 1821 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf