Volume 4, Number 3 (7 2011)                   ijme 2011, 4(3): 79-87 | Back to browse issues page


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Aghab Babaee N, Hatami J. The law of dual effect and the impact of intention in ethical judgment. ijme. 2011; 4 (3) :79-87
URL: http://ijme.tums.ac.ir/article-1-176-en.html

1- , naseragha@gmail.com
Abstract:   (10280 Views)
Ethical research and theories assign great importance to the role of intention in passing moral judgments about individuals’ actions. The doctrine of double effect is among ethical disciplines that differentiate between controversial medical situations such as end of life care or abortion, and intentional, premeditated damage, in that they consider the former impermissible and the latter permissible under specific circumstances. The present paper was conducted to investigate the role of intention in judging a person’s actions, and to provide empirical evidence for the doctrine of double effect. 200 students were asked to evaluate the morality of two situations: in the first situation, one person needs to be killed so that five other persons can be saved. In the second, the killing of one person is the side effect of saving five others. Data analysis was performed based on frequency, averages and ANOVAs using SPSS statistical software version 16. The analysis indicated completely different responses to these two situations: in the first situation most respondents (62.3%) considered the act of killing the one person unethical, while in the second situation the majority of respondents (60.6%) considered the act that would result in the one person getting killed as ethical. The findings of the present paper highlighted the role of intention in passing moral judgments and provided empirical evidence in support of the doctrine of double effect. This research also demonstrated that the attitude of theorists about the role of intention in moral judgments is consistent with the moral sense of ordinary people.
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Type of Study: Research |
Published: 2013/08/21

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