Feminist Ethics and Natural Law

Author: Cristina L. H. Traina
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
ISBN: 9781589018464
Format: PDF
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Heated debates over such issues as abortion, contraception, ordination, and Church hierarchy suggest that feminist and natural law ethics are diametrically opposed. Cristina L.H. Traina now reexamines both Roman Catholic natural law tradition and Anglo-American feminist ethics and reconciles the two positions by showing how some of their aims and assumptions complement one another. After carefully scrutinizing Aquinas’s moral theology, she analyzes trends in both contemporary feminist ethics, theological as well as secular, and twentieth-century Roman Catholic moral theology. Although feminist ethics reject many of the methods and conclusions of the scholastic and revisionist natural law schools, Traina shows that a truly Thomistic natural law ethic nonetheless provides a much-needed holistic foundation for contemporary feminist ethics. On the other hand, she offers new perspectives on the writings of Josef Fuchs, Richard McCormick, and Gustavo Gutierrez, arguing that their failure to catch the full spirit of Thomas’s moral vision is due to inadequate attention to feminist critical methods. This highly original book proposes an innovative union of two supposedly antagonistic schools of thought, a new feminist natural law that would yield more comprehensive moral analysis than either existing tradition alone. This is a provocative book not only for students of moral theology but also for feminists who may object to the very notion of natural law ethics, suggesting how each might find insight in an unlikely place.

Immovable Laws Irresistible Rights

Author: Christine Pierce
Publisher:
ISBN:
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Same-sex partnerships. Pregnancy through in vitro fertilization. Ending one's own life in dignity. All are deemed inherently wrong by the standards of natural law ethics, but for many people they represent legitimate life choices that are morally right. Now a leading feminist critic of the natural law tradition explores the ongoing confrontation between natural law and moral rights to argue that rights constitute a more solid grounding for ethics in human affairs—and for feminist thought. In this volume, Christine Pierce's important essays—including the celebrated "Natural Law Language and Women"—expand, reflect, and refine this central controversy. Reaching back to Aristotle and Aquinas and drawing on modern papal encyclicals and Supreme Court cases, Pierce demonstrates that the natural law tradition, with its doctrine of a supposed hierarchy of natural purpose, has served to mystify women's nature and thereby justify restricting women to a predetermined social stratum. Addressing issues that concern not only feminism but legal theory as well, she defends her views on equality and universalization against a growing postmodern critique and presents rights theory as an alternative to an ethics of responsibility based on Aristotelian notions of friendship and trust. Through tightly constructed arguments presented in engaging prose, Pierce conveys her deep knowledge of legal philosophy and her passion for rights as she takes on such issues as AIDS, gay marriage, animal liberation, and feminist separatism. She combats the prevailing view of Plato as sexist and explores Sartre's views of "holes and slime." She also examines the work of contemporary authors in ecology, biology, sociobiology, and religion to reveal their reliance on nature for ethical conclusions, and she criticizes recent efforts to root a feminist natural law in Thomism. With natural law concepts now in fashion with many conservatives and even some Supreme Court justices, Pierce's essays offer a necessary perspective on where current legal and ethical thinking is headed. Immovable Laws, Irresistible Rights is invigorating reading for all scholars, students, and interested readers who seek a better understanding of these arguments and the issues affected by them.

Explorations in Feminist Ethics

Author: Eve Browning Cole
Publisher: Indiana University Press
ISBN: 9780253206978
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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"These essays advance a reinterpretation of pivotal categories such as self-knowing, moral agency, and altruism... A must for all students and researchers/faculty engaged in the study of ethics." —Choice "This is an extraordinarily valuable collection of essays in feminist ethics." —Teaching Philosophy A range of recent work in feminist ethics, exploring such issues as the ethic of care, a viable feminist ethics, Pythagoreanism, existentialism, utilitarianism, self-knowing, emotion, and moral vision. Also discussed is the process of applying feminist ethics to work situations. The concluding essays point to the future and present new visions for the field.

The Sexual Person

Author: Todd A. Salzman
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
ISBN: 1589017269
Format: PDF, ePub
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Two principles capture the essence of the official Catholic position on the morality of sexuality: first, that any human genital act must occur within the framework of heterosexual marriage; second, each and every marriage act must remain open to the transmission of life. In this comprehensive overview of Catholicism and sexuality, theologians Todd A. Salzman and Michael G. Lawler examine and challenge these principles. Remaining firmly within the Catholic tradition, they contend that the church is being inconsistent in its teaching by adopting a dynamic, historically conscious anthropology and worldview on social ethics and the interpretation of scripture while adopting a static, classicist anthropology and worldview on sexual ethics. While some documents from Vatican II, like Gaudium et spes ("the marital act promotes self-giving by which spouses enrich each other"), gave hope for a renewed understanding of sexuality, the church has not carried out the full implications of this approach. In short, say Salzman and Lawler: emphasize relationships, not acts, and recognize Christianity's historically and culturally conditioned understanding of human sexuality. The Sexual Person draws historically, methodologically, and anthropologically from the best of Catholic tradition and provides a context for current theological debates between traditionalists and revisionists regarding marriage, cohabitation, homosexuality, reproductive technologies, and what it means to be human. This daring and potentially revolutionary book will be sure to provoke constructive dialogue among theologians, and between theologians and the Magisterium.

Global Feminist Ethics

Author: Peggy DesAutels
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
ISBN: 9780742559103
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This volume is fourth in the series of annuals created under the auspices of The Association for Feminist Ethics and Social Theory (FEAST). The topics covered herein-from peacekeeping and terrorism, to sex trafficking and women's paid labor, to poverty and religious fundamentalism-are vital to women and to feminist movements throughout the world.

The Feminist Care Tradition in Animal Ethics

Author: Josephine Donovan
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 9780231140393
Format: PDF, Kindle
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In Beyond Animal Rights, Josephine Donovan and Carol J. Adams introduced feminist "ethic of care" theory into philosophical discussions of the treatment of animals. In this new volume, seven essays from Beyond Animal Rights are joined by nine new articles-most of which were written in response to that book-and a new introduction that situates feminist animal care theory within feminist theory and the larger debate over animal rights. Contributors critique theorists' reliance on natural rights doctrine and utilitarianism, which, they suggest, have a masculine bias. They argue for ethical attentiveness and sympathy in our relationships with animals and propose a link between the continuing subjugation of women and the human domination of nature. Beginning with the earliest articulation of the idea in the mid-1980s and continuing to the theory's most recent revisions, this volume presents the most complete portrait of the evolution of the feminist-care tradition.

Nature as Reason

Author: Jean Porter
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
ISBN: 9780802849069
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This noteworthy book develops a new theory of the natural law that takes its orientation from the account of the natural law developed by Thomas Aquinas, as interpreted and supplemented in the context of scholastic theology in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Though this history might seem irrelevant to twenty-first-century life, Jean Porter shows that the scholastic approach to the natural law still has much to contribute to the contemporary discussion of Christian ethics. Aquinas and his interlocutors provide a way of thinking about the natural law that is distinctively theological while at the same time remaining open to other intellectual perspectives, including those of science. In the course of her work, Porter examines the scholastics' assumptions and beliefs about nature, Aquinas's account of happiness, and the overarching claim that reason can generate moral norms. Ultimately, Porter argues that a Thomistic theory of the natural law is well suited to provide a starting point for developing a more nuanced account of the relationship between specific beliefs and practices. While Aquinas's approach to the natural law may not provide a system of ethical norms that is both universally compelling and detailed enough to be practical, it does offer something that is arguably more valuable -- namely, a way of reflecting theologically on the phenomenon of human morality.

Feminist Perspectives in Medical Ethics

Author: Helen B. Holmes
Publisher: Indiana University Press
ISBN: 9780253206954
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The fields of medical ethics and women's studies have experienced unprecedented growth during the last twenty years. Along with the rapid pace of development in medicine and biology and changes in social expectations, moral quandaries about the body and social practices involving it have multiplied. Philosophers are uniquely situated to attempt to clarify and resolve these questions. Until recently, however, the subdiscipline of biomedical ethics has reflected mainstream scholars' lack of interest in gender as a category of analysis. The aim of this volume is to show how a feminist perspective advances biomedical ethics. Writing at the forefront of feminist medical ethics, the authors uncover inconsistencies in traditional arguments and argue for the importance of hitherto ignored factors in decision making. The essays include both theory and very specific examples that demonstrate the glaring inadequacy of mainstream medical ethics. This book makes clear the urgent need to correct gender bias and to attend to women's concerns. The reader will come to insist that the values of women are basic to any search for responsible, fair assessment of moral issues in medicine. The contributors are Nora Kizer Bell, Jeannine Ross Boyer, Joan C. Callahan, John C. Fletcher, Sara T. Fry, Helen Bequaert Holmes, Sara Ann Ketchum, James W. Knight, Rosalind Ekman Ladd, Judith Lorber, Heidi M. Malm, Don Marquis, Julien Murphy, Hilde Lindemann Nelson, James Lindemann Nelson, Kelly Oliver, Laura M. Purdy, Sue V. Rosser, Susan Sherwin, Betty A. Sichel, Mary Anne Warren, Virginia L. Warren, Susan Wendell, and Dorothy C. Wertz.