Advertisement

Journal of Bioethical Inquiry

, Volume 1, Issue 1, pp 27–31 | Cite as

Selling organs and souls: Should the state prohibit ‘demeaning’ practices?

  • Dominic J C Wilkinson
Article
  • 391 Downloads

Abstract

It is sometimes argued that practices such as organ-selling should be prohibited because they are demeaning to the individuals involved. In this article the plausibility of such an argument is questioned. I will examine what it means to demean or be demeaned, and suggest that the mere fact that an individual is demeaning themself does not provide sufficient justification for legal prohibition. On the contrary, such laws might be argued to be demeaning.

Keywords

Kant demeaning autonomy law 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Cohen CB. Selling bits and pieces of humans to make babies: The gift of the magi revisited. J Med Philos 1999;24(3):288–306.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Dodds S, Jones K. Surrogacy and the body as property. In: Darling S, editor. Cross-currents. Philosophy and the nineties. Adelaide: Flinders University Press, 1992:119–133.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Stempsey WE. Organ markets and human dignity: on selling your body and soul. Christ Bioeth 2000;6(2):195–204.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Hayry M. Prescribing cannabis: freedom, autonomy, and values. J Med Ethics 2004;30(4):333–336.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    McLachlan HV. Defending commercial surrogate motherhood against Van Niekerk and Van Zyl. J Med Ethics 1997;23(6):344–348.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Purdy LM. Surrogate mothering: exploitation or empowerment? Bioethics 1989;3(1):18–34.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Richards D. Sex, Drugs, Death and the law: An essay on human rights and overcriminalisation Totowa, Rowman and Littlefield, 1982.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Harris J. “Goodbye Dolly?” The ethics of human cloning. J Med Ethics 1997;23(6):353–360.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Wilkinson S. Bodies for sale: ethics and exploitation in the human body trade. London: Routledge, 2003.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Kant, I. Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals, trans Lewis White Beck. 1959 cited in Green RM. What does it mean to use someone as ‘a means only’: rereading Kant. Kennedy Inst Ethics J 2001;11(3):247–261.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Dodds S, Jones K. Surrogacy and autonomy. Bioethics 1989;3(1):1–17.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Green RM. What does it mean to use someone as “a means only”: rereading Kant. Kennedy Inst Ethics J 2001;11(3):247–261.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Feinberg J. The moral limits of the criminal law: Harm to Self. New York: Oxford University Press, 1986.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Mill JS. On Liberty. New York: Bobbs-Merrill, 1956, p 13Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Kant I. On the common saying: That may be correct in theory but it is of no use in practice cited in Guyer P. Kant on Freedom, Law and Happiness. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000. p264Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Wood A. Kant's ethical thought. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Royal Children's HospitalMelbourneAustralia

Personalised recommendations