|Title||You Can't Always Get What You Want: A Gewirthian Model of Rational Autonomy in Abortion|
|Authors||Clayton Thompson, J.|
The law regulating the availability of abortion is problematic both legally and morally. It is dogmatic in its requirements of women and doctors and ignorant of would-be fathers. Practically, its usage is liberal - with s1(1)(a) Abortion Act 1967 treated as a ‘catch all’ ground - it allows abortion on demand. Yet this is not reflected in the ‘law’. Against this outdated legislation I propose a model of autonomy which seeks to tether our moral concerns with a new legal approach to abortion. I do so by maintaining that a legal conception of autonomy is derivable from the categorical imperative resulting from Gewirth’s argument to the Principle of Generic Consistency: Act in accordance with the generic rights of your recipients as well as of yourself. This model of Gewirthian Rational Autonomy, I suggest, provides a guide for both public and private notions of autonomy and how our autonomous interests can be balanced across social structures in order to legitimately empower choice. I claim, ultimately, that relevant rights in the context of abortion are derivable from this model.
|Keywords||Abortion, Gewirth, Morality, Reason, Rationality, Kant, Feminism, Bioethics|
|Conference||HEAL Seminar Series|