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Literature & Language
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Rosalind Hursthouse on rights of fetus. Literature & Language Essay (Essay Sample)

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In her essay ”Virtue ethics and abortion”, Rosalind Hursthouse claims that arguing over the rights of the fetus or the rights of the pregnant woman does not solve the moral issue of abortion. Critically evaluate this claim. (Hursthouse 2017).
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Running head: HURSTHOUSE ON RIGHTS OF FETUSES & PREGNANT WOMEN1
Hursthouse on Rights of Fetuses & Pregnant Women: A Critique
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HURSTHOUSE ON RIGHTS OF FETUSES & PREGNANT WOMEN

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Hursthouse on Rights of Fetuses & Pregnant Women: A Critique


I. Main Argument
Critical of criticisms against Virtue Theory, Hursthouse (1991) presents nine claims made by supporters of action-oriented propositions, namely Deontology Theory and Utilitarian Theory. In her presentation, Hursthouse frequently asserts she does not mean to offer any solution to abortion problems, particularly issues, or considerations, of fetus status and women’s rights. Instead, Hursthouse consistently expresses her support of Virtual Theory, by refuting all nine claims, without claiming to offer a solution to a “main criticism” in question about pluralism and cultural relativism as well as conflicting requirements of different virtues.
Virtue Theory gives no moral direction whatsoever, argue action-oriented propositions, virtue/ vice concepts are hardly, if at all, enough to inform anyone of what practical action could be made, let alone in which direction and to what degree, by merely prescribing, as Virtual Theory does, moral principles, or virtues, a virtuous agent adopts as virtuous (and hence prescribable for all virtue-seeking individuals). Moreover, Virtual Theory, action-oriented propositions go on, could be centered on different premises about virtue/vice – and, for that matter, what is worthwhile – and hence resulting in different conclusions. In response, Hursthouse argues that normative moral rules, albeit offering “clear” and prescriptive actions, are informed by a prior conception of what is right or wrong – without any distinction between different matters of varying degrees of significance including, in current case, abortion.

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