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Doing and Allowing Harm - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Doing and Allowing Harm

Fiona Woollard


Doing harm seems much harder to justify than merely allowing harm. If a boulder is rushing towards Bob and stopping the boulder would cost you your life, you may refuse to stop the boulder. You may not push the boulder towards Bob to save your own life. This principle—the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing—requires defence. This book provides a detailed analysis of the distinction between doing and allowing harm. Drawing on this analysis, this book shows that the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing is best understood as a principle that protects us from harmful imposition. Such protection against impos ... More

Keywords: ethics, deontology, doctrine of doing and allowing, action/omission, obligations to aid, Peter Singer, Peter Unger, contractualism, rule-consequentialism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780199683642
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199683642.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Fiona Woollard, author
University of Southampton

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