Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

American Philosophical Quarterly: Vol. 45, No. 4, October 2008

Academic journal article The Review of Metaphysics

American Philosophical Quarterly: Vol. 45, No. 4, October 2008

Article excerpt

Orthogonality of Phenomenality and Content, GOTTFRIED VOSGERAU, TOBIAS SCHLICHT, and ALBERT NEWEN

This paper explores the orthogonality of phenominality and content. It notes that phenomenality should be explicated without the presupposition of phenomenal content. It should be understood as a uniform relational property of conscious representations which is orthogonal to content. A review of the classical arguments and theories as well as empirical facts about phenomenal consciousness is presented. In conclusion, it notes that content and phenomenality are two distinct and independent features of mental representations. It emphasizes that those theories that seek to explain consciousness by appeal to some contents are doomed to fail, while arguments that understand phenomenality based from the content are invalid.

Agent-based Virtue Ethics and the Fundamentality of Virtue, DANIEL C. RUSSELL

This article explores Michael Slote's thesis on the fundamentality of virtue in agent-based virtue ethics. The thesis explains the two grounds of virtuousness in which actions become virtuous only on account of the virtuousness expressed by the agents in doing such action, and that virtuousness of an agent and his motives are fundamental notions and not grounded on anything else. The three main objections raised against the thesis are discussed. It notes that although the fundamentality thesis rejects any grounding of virtue concepts, virtue ethics cannot allow that virtues are fundamental. Thus, virtues should be grounded in a reflective ethical outlook, rather than in metaphysical or religious facts.

"Designer Babies" and Harm to Supernumerary Embryos, MARK WALKER

This paper discusses the ethical and moral issues in the preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) known as PPDG in the creation of designer babies. PGD is a diagnostic process used for selecting positive traits that is performed on embryos before implantation. The procedure requires the removal of one or two cells with a needle when the embryo is at the six-to-ten-cell stage of development. It involves methods of assay, including polymerase chain reaction and fluorescent in-situ hybridization, which are used to observe genetic abnormalities associated with monogenetic diseases like Huntington's and chromosomal abnormalities including Robertsonian translocations. The positive traits that are selected include the potential for increased muscle mass, perfect pitch, and high intelligence. …

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