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Human Flourishing in an Age of Gene Editing$
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Erik Parens and Josephine Johnston

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190940362

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190940362.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 13 August 2020

Unraveling the Human Tapestry

Unraveling the Human Tapestry

Diversity, Flourishing, and Genetic Modification

(p.157) 11 Unraveling the Human Tapestry
Human Flourishing in an Age of Gene Editing

Robert Sparrow

Oxford University Press

If parents are choosing their children’s genes, there is a chance that they will all try to have healthy, long-lived, handsome, and intelligent children. While many have advertised a world of “perfect babies” as a utopia, to some critics the loss of diversity involved would be a disaster. This chapter distinguishes between different sorts of diversity, different putative beneficiaries of the existence of diversity, and different reasons for believing diversity to be valuable. Sparrow argues that the threat posed to valuable kinds of diversity by gene editing is less than critics often fear. He suggests that, where gene editing does pose a plausible threat to a valuable kind of diversity, it might be reasonable to limit the use of gene editing as long as conserving or securing diversity does not require sacrificing the welfare of any individual too much.

Keywords:   ethics, gene editing, flourishing, diversity, disability, preimplantation genetic diagnosis, welfare, eugenics

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