The Non-Identity Problem and the Ethics of Future People

Hardcover | October 24, 2014

byDavid Boonin

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David Boonin presents a new account of the non-identity problem: a puzzle about our obligations to people who do not yet exist. Our actions sometimes have an effect not only on the quality of life that people will enjoy in the future, but on which particular people will exist in the future toenjoy it. In cases where this is so, the combination of certain assumptions that most people seem to accept can yield conclusions that most people seem to reject. The non-identity problem has important implications both for ethical theory and for a number of topics in applied ethics, includingcontroversial issues in bioethics, environmental ethics and disability ethics. It has been the subject of a great deal of discussion for nearly four decades, but this is the first book-length study devoted exclusively to its examination. Boonin begins by explaining what the problem is, why the problem matters, and what criteria a solution to the problem must satisfy in order to count as a successful one. He then provides a critical survey of the solutions to the problem that have thus far been proposed in the sizeable literaturethat the problem has generated and concludes by developing and defending an unorthodox alternative solution, one that differs fundamentally from virtually every other available approach.

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David Boonin presents a new account of the non-identity problem: a puzzle about our obligations to people who do not yet exist. Our actions sometimes have an effect not only on the quality of life that people will enjoy in the future, but on which particular people will exist in the future toenjoy it. In cases where this is so, the com...

David Boonin is Professor of Philosophy and Associate Dean for Arts and Humanities at the University of Colorado. He received his BA from Yale University, and his PhD from the University of Pittsburgh. He taught at Georgetown University (1992-94) and Tulane University (1994-98) before taking up his current position in 1998. He also hel...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:320 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.98 inPublished:October 24, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199682933

ISBN - 13:9780199682935

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Table of Contents

Preface1. Five Plausible Premises and One Implausible Conclusion2. Rejecting the First Premise3. Rejecting the Second Premise4. Rejecting the Third Premise5. Rejecting the Fourth Premise6. Rejecting the Fifth Premise7. Accepting the ConclusionAppendicesBibliographyIndex