Thomson vs. Marquis Essay

758 Words4 Pages
Abortion has been one of the most controversial issues throughout modern day applied ethics. Thomson’s ‘violinist’ argument has been one of the most influential analogies for abortion and counters Don Marquis’ ‘future like ours’ argument against abortion. However, Marquis’ argument is more ethically moral as opposed to Thomson’s argument. Throughout this essay I will firstly outline Judith Jarvis Thomson’s “violinist” argument. Secondly, I will present Don Marquis’ “future like ours” argument. Thirdly, I shall analysis both arguments. Fourthly, yet lastly, I shall outline my views on abortion. I will begin by outlining Thomson’s violinist analogy. Suppose you were kidnapped off the street by the music societal group unknowingly. Later, you wake up in a bed plugged into a dying violinist. You are told that his life will be saved if you continued to provide your body’s usage. However if you choose to unplug yourself, then the famous violinist will inevitably die. This analogy however, is only applicable in the case of a pregnancy due to rape and is otherwise a disanalogy. Secondly, I will present Don Marquis’ “future likes ours” argument. Marquis argues that abortion deprives a foetus of future experiences is akin to a pre-mature human being’s death. For Marquis, abortion is just as wrong as murdering a human being. Marquis states that “The future of a standard foetus includes a set of experiences, projects, activities, and such which are identical with the futures of adult human beings and are identical with the futures of young children.” Marquis further adds that “it is wrong to kill human beings after the time of birth is a reason that also applies to foetuses, it follows that abortion is prima facie morally wrong.” Marquis remarks that killing deprives humans and foetuses the value of their future. Therefore for Marquis, killing foetuses or human beings is
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