<!DOCTYPE html><HTML lang="en"> <head><meta charset="utf-8"> <title>Todman (Theo) - Thesis - Degrees of Personhood (Theo Todman's Book Collection - Paper Abstracts) </title> <link href="../../TheosStyle.css" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css"><link rel="shortcut icon" href="../../TT_ICO.png" /></head> <BODY> <CENTER> <div id="header"><HR><h1>Theo Todman's Web Page - Paper Abstracts</h1><HR></div><A name="Top"></A> <TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=950> <tr><th><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_17/PaperSummary_17804.htm">Thesis - Degrees of Personhood</A></th></tr> <tr><th><A HREF = "../../Authors/T/Author_Todman (Theo).htm">Todman (Theo)</a></th></tr> <tr><th>Source: </th></tr> <tr><th>Paper - Abstract</th></tr> </TABLE> </CENTER> <P><CENTER><TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=400><tr><td><A HREF = "../../PaperSummaries/PaperSummary_17/PaperSummary_17804.htm">Paper Summary</A></td><td><A HREF = "../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_870.htm">Link to Latest Write-Up Note</A></td></tr></TABLE></CENTER></P> <hr><P><FONT COLOR = "0000FF"><ul type="disc"><li>This pseudo-Paper is intended as the mechanism to record time spent on the Note '<a name="1"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_870.htm">Degrees of Personhood</A><SUP>1</SUP>' during my Thesis research, as from 2011. </li><li>For the actual time recorded, click on "Paper Summary" above. </li></ul><FONT COLOR = "0000FF"><hr><br><B><u><U><A HREF="#On-Page_Link_P17804_2">Write-up</A></U><SUB>2</SUB><a name="On-Page_Return_P17804_2"></A></u> (as at 09/02/2018 22:04:48): Degrees of Personhood</B><BR><br><u><U><A HREF="#On-Page_Link_P17804_3">Plug Note</A></U><SUB>3</SUB><a name="On-Page_Return_P17804_3"></A></u><ul type="disc"><li>That personhood may come in degrees  rather than being  all or nothing  is rather a dangerous thought, at least if applied to <a name="2"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_75.htm">human persons</A><SUP>4</SUP>. </li><li>However, if we are inclined to extend the boundaries of personhood to include some higher non-human <a name="3"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_30.htm">animals</A><SUP>5</SUP> (or  in the future  <a name="4"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_9/Notes_939.htm">artificial intelligences</A><SUP>6</SUP>)  but don t want them to be on a par with human beings, for instance in moral accountability  we might have to allow the thought  person  2nd class , or something like that. </li><li>It seems clear that the qualities that qualify an individual to be a person (see the <U><A HREF="#On-Page_Link_P17804_7">list</A></U><SUB>7</SUB><a name="On-Page_Return_P17804_7"></A> in <a name="5"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_1/Notes_115.htm">Dennett</A><SUP>8</SUP>, and also the main Note on <a name="6"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_9.htm">Persons</A><SUP>9</SUP>), come in degrees. </li><li>The key point is probably whether personhood is an honorific rather than a <a name="7"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_1/Notes_101.htm">substance</A><SUP>10</SUP>-term. If it is not a substance-term, as I believe it is not, then we have the option to provide  say  legal protection to the underlying substance  say human animal or <a name="8"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_0/Notes_74.htm">human being</A><SUP>11</SUP>, and denying the epithet  person to some human beings need not have the genocidal overtones that are usually suspected whenever such a thought is expressed. </li><li>So, maybe some persons are  more persons than others and persons do indeed come in degrees. But maybe they are just better persons according to some criteria  whether ethical or metaphysical  and these criteria need to be sharply distinguished. </li><li>For instance Frankfurt  in <a name="11"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_00/Abstract_207.htm">Frankfurt (Harry) - Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person</A>"  claimed that <a name="9"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_1/Notes_107.htm">wantons</A><SUP>12</SUP> are not persons, but maybe we should say that (from an ethical perspective) they are poor exemplars of the concept PERSON. </li><li>We can think of an analogy with animals. Some animals (eg. human beings  or, lest we be considered a special case - chimpanzees) are, according to many evaluative criteria, superior to other animals (worms). Yet all are animals. Now ethically and practically, some animals deserve greater consideration than others  it would appear that chimpanzees have a greater capacity for suffering than worms, for instance. So too, presumably, do exemplars of the same species, though not to the same degree except in severely pathological cases. </li><li>The question from the perspective of my research is not particularly the moral dimension  the dangerous thought that some persons may be more valuable than others  but whether there are degrees of personhood, or whether the best way of describing the situation of certain individuals being better qualified to be persons is to say that all are persons, but some are better persons than others. </li><li>This depends on what a person is. If the concept PERSON is itself a substance term (rather than being a property of substances), then we may be right to make the analogy with animals  where ANIMAL is a substance term. Otherwise, the analogy may not be apt. </li><li>The issue is highlighted by the possibility that some of the higher mammals are persons, nearly persons, or persons of reduced degree. If all persons are just persons, period, and all persons have to be treated equally (if that is our ethical outlook), then we might be stuck with duties that seem counter-intuitive (to some, at least). </li><li>Works on this topic that <U><A HREF="#On-Page_Link_P17804_13">I ve actually read</A></U><SUB>13</SUB><a name="On-Page_Return_P17804_13"></A>, <U><A HREF="#On-Page_Link_P17804_14">include</A></U><SUB>14</SUB><a name="On-Page_Return_P17804_14"></A> the following:- <ol type="i"><li><a name="12"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_00/Abstract_207.htm">Frankfurt (Harry) - Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person</A>", </li><li><a name="13"></a>"<A HREF = "../../Abstracts/Abstract_05/Abstract_5910.htm">Lockwood (Michael) - When Does a Life Begin?</A>"</li></ol></li><li>A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with:- <ol type="i"><li>To be supplied.</li></ol></li><li>This is mostly a <a name="10"></a><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_7/Notes_737.htm">place-holder</A><SUP>15</SUP>. </li></ul><BR><HR><BR><U><B>In-Page Footnotes</U></B><a name="On-Page_Link_P17804_2"></A><BR><BR><U><A HREF="#On-Page_Return_P17804_2"><B>Footnote 2</A></B></U>: <ul type="disc"><li>This is the write-up as it was when this Abstract was last output, with text as at the timestamp indicated (09/02/2018 22:04:48). </li><li><A HREF = "../../Notes/Notes_8/Notes_870.htm">Link to Latest Write-Up Note</A>. </li></ul><a name="On-Page_Link_P17804_3"></A><U><A HREF="#On-Page_Return_P17804_3"><B>Footnote 3</A></B></U>: <ul type="disc"><li>A number of my philosophical Notes are  promissory notes currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned. </li><li>I ve decided to add some text  whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive  for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.</li><li>As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance. </li><li>The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists. </li></ul><a name="On-Page_Link_P17804_7"></A><U><A HREF="#On-Page_Return_P17804_7"><B>Footnote 7</A></B></U>: <ul type="disc"><li>The list is:-<BR>&rarr; rationality,<BR>&rarr; intentionality   predicated of <BR>&rarr; intentionality   adopted towards <BR>&rarr; reciprocation of the personal stance,<BR>&rarr; verbal communication and<BR>&rarr; consciousness of self </li></ul><a name="On-Page_Link_P17804_13"></A><U><A HREF="#On-Page_Return_P17804_13"><B>Footnote 13</A></B></U>: <ul type="disc"><li>Frequently I ll have made copious marginal annotations, and sometimes have written up a review-note. </li><li>In the former case, I intend to transfer the annotations into electronic form as soon as I can find the time. </li><li>In the latter case, I will have remarked on the fact against the citation, and will integrate the comments into this Note in due course. </li><li>My intention is to incorporate into these Notes comments on material I ve already read rather than engage with unread material at this stage. </li></ul><a name="On-Page_Link_P17804_14"></A><U><A HREF="#On-Page_Return_P17804_14"><B>Footnote 14</A></B></U>: <ul type="disc"><li>I may have read others in between updates of this Note  in which case they will be marked as such in the  References and Reading List below.</li><li>Papers or Books partially read have a rough %age based on the time spent versus the time expected. </li></ul> <FONT COLOR = "0000FF"><HR></P><a name="ColourConventions"></a><p><b>Text Colour Conventions (see <A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_10/Notes_1025.htm">disclaimer</a>)</b></p><OL TYPE="1"><LI><FONT COLOR = "0000FF">Blue</FONT>: Text by me; &copy; Theo Todman, 2018</li></OL> <BR><HR><BR><CENTER> <TABLE class = "Bridge" WIDTH=950> <TR><TD WIDTH="30%">&copy; Theo Todman, June 2007 - August 2018.</TD> <TD WIDTH="40%">Please address any comments on this page to <A HREF="mailto:theo@theotodman.com">theo@theotodman.com</A>.</TD> <TD WIDTH="30%">File output: <time datetime="2018-08-17T12:08" pubdate>17/08/2018 12:08:58</time> <br><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_10/Notes_1010.htm">Website Maintenance Dashboard</A></TD></TR> <TD WIDTH="30%"><A HREF="#Top">Return to Top of this Page</A></TD> <TD WIDTH="40%"><A HREF="../../Notes/Notes_11/Notes_1140.htm">Return to Theo Todman's Philosophy Page</A></TD> <TD WIDTH="30%"><A HREF="../../index.htm">Return to Theo Todman's Home Page</A></TD> </TR></TABLE></CENTER><HR> </BODY> </HTML>