Examine and comment on the view that only a full human person is deserving of moral rights, with reference

to the topic you have investigated.
Introduction • • • • Define technical terms (person, rights) Explain the controversy/issue concerning your topic (abortion) Introduce abortion (prepare a short standard paragraph you can drop into any essay here: definition, types, the law, and statistics). Highlight the issues and scholars you will engage with.

Personhood and the argument against abortion • • • • • Is it wrong to kill an innocent human being? What’s the difference between ‘life’, ‘human’, and ‘person’? An emphasis upon personhood means rejecting the idea of Sanctity of Life. Basic criticisms of the Sanctity of Life concept (Warren, Glover). Add your evaluation.

Personhood and stages of pregnancy/birth • • • o o o o o Controversial issue: when does ‘personhood’ begin? Outline some key facts on stages of pregnancy: which qualities develop when? Then evaluate different proposed stages of personhood: Conception Ensoulment Viability Birth Infancy

• State your assessment of these life stages: is one of these the obvious stage at which a foetus/baby develops personhood?

Only the right of choice and self-determination matter here. What rights would Singer give to the foetus? (None). Evaluate: what do you think of Singer’s arguments? (Possibly add …) Contrast other philosophers with Singer and Mahoney • • • Don Marquis? Rosalind Hursthouse? Albert Schweitzer? The foetus and human rights • • • • Explain how personhood connects with the rights of the foetus. Singer regards personhood as key. it is abortion is entirely acceptable. Personhood has nothing to do with rights. Singer rejects all religious approaches to the value of life. this is just ‘speciesism’.Criteria for personhood: Jack Mahoney • Some philosophers think that we can set criteria for personhood. Therefore. particularly those dealing with the out-dated concept of Sanctity of Life. No foetus or even new born infant possesses these qualities. defined by intellectual qualities: consciousness and rationality. Evaluate – what is your view? Conclusion . • List the five criteria put forward by Mahoney. • Evaluate these: do you agree that these five things make up a person? Peter Singer on the foetus and personhood • • • • • Controversial philosopher Peter Singer argues that human life is of no special value. Why? Contrast Jarvis Thomson. Singer argues.

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