Thompson’s Argument for Permitting Abortion


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Essay #: 072942
Total text length is 18,941 characters (approximately 13.1 pages).

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The beginning:
Thompson's Argument for Permitting Abortion
Judith Jarvis Thompson's argument in favor of permitting abortion proceeds from a hypothetical acceptance of the common argument that a human fetus becomes a person at the moment of conception. Thompson clearly rejects this argument because, among other reasons, the fact that one thing gradually (as opposed to instantly) becomes another thing, does not immediately mean that the two things are, or should be, considered the same thing. She does however, admit that the person-hood of a human fetus will likely never be adequately codified temporally, and therefore adopts the position, for the sake of her argument, that a human fetus is a person. She does this for at least two reasons: first in order...
The end:
.....s in favor of rejecting the bright line rules propounded by anti-abortionists. This is probably the most realistic position: any strict position on abortion, for or against, adopting any kind of bright line rule, length of term designation, rationale or justification, will always be found wanting in some scenario, hypothetical or real. Thompson's argument is wisely limited to rejecting arguments that flatly condemn any particular category of abortion, and in that sense is successful. In fact Thompson's title A Defense of Abortion is probably inaccurate – A Response to the Opponents of Abortion would be better.
Works Cited
Thompson, Judith Jarvis. “A Defense of Abortion.” Philosophy & Public Affairs 1.1 (2011): 47 – 66. Web. 2 Dec. 2011.