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Brain damage and the moral significance of consciousness.

Abstract:

Neuroimaging studies of brain-damaged patients diagnosed as in the vegetative state suggest that the patients might be conscious. This might seem to raise no new ethical questions given that in related disputes both sides agree that evidence for consciousness gives strong reason to preserve life. We question this assumption. We clarify the widely held but obscure principle that consciousness is morally significant. It is hard to apply this principle to difficult cases given that philosophers ...

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Publication status:
Published
Peer review status:
Peer reviewed
Version:
Publisher's version

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Publisher copy:
10.1093/jmp/jhn038

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Institution:
University of Oxford
Department:
Oxford, HUM, Philosophy, Philosophy NonPostholders
Role:
Author
More by this author
Institution:
University of Oxford
Department:
Oxford, HUM, Philosophy, Philosophy Postholders
Role:
Author
Publisher:
Oxford University Press Publisher's website
Journal:
The Journal of medicine and philosophy Journal website
Volume:
34
Issue:
1
Pages:
6-26
Publication date:
2009-02-05
DOI:
EISSN:
1744-5019
ISSN:
0360-5310
URN:
uuid:5b4ea187-66b6-4e9d-94eb-bd29d686e465
Source identifiers:
191637
Local pid:
pubs:191637

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