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Doing and Allowing Harm$
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Fiona Woollard

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199683642

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199683642.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 26 September 2021

Doing, Allowing, and Imposing

Doing, Allowing, and Imposing

(p.97) 6 Doing, Allowing, and Imposing
Doing and Allowing Harm

Fiona Woollard

Oxford University Press

The analysis from the first part of the book is used to defend the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing. Drawing on a suggestion from Frances Kamm, the author shows that the Doctrine is best understood as a principle protecting us from harmful imposition. Constraints against doing harm protect potential victims from harmful causal imposition (from the behaviour of others intruding upon what is theirs). Permissions to allow harm protect agents from harmful normative imposition (from the needs of others intruding upon what is theirs). For something to belong to a person, she must have authority over what happens to it. This authority requires both protection from harmful casual imposition and protection from harmful normative imposition. Thus the Doctrine of Doing and Allowing is needed if morality is to recognize anything as genuinely belonging to a person, even that person’s own body.

Keywords:   doctrine of doing and allowing, action/omission, Frances Kamm, imposition, self-ownership

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