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The Ethics of ProtocellsMoral and Social Implications of Creating Life in the Laboratory$
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Mark A. Bedau and Emily C. Parke

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780262012621

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262012621.001.0001

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Methodological Considerations about the Ethical and Social Implications of Protocells

Methodological Considerations about the Ethical and Social Implications of Protocells

Chapter:
(p.333) 17 Methodological Considerations about the Ethical and Social Implications of Protocells
Source:
The Ethics of Protocells
Author(s):

Giovanni Boniolo

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262012621.003.0017

This chapter addresses methodological preliminaries in order to influence the logically and rhetorically correct argumentative framework. It specifically explores the strategies along which the debate could move: the by-analogy strategy, the ontological strategy, and the type-token strategy. It turns to the major arguments that can be used. It also highlights the roles and responsibilities of the scientific community, proposing a sort of international agency that should monitor and prepare analyses of what is occurring. This chapter shows that the transcendence argument against the actions of creating and using protocells is a false belief. It also suggests that the slippery slope argument is either fallacious or very weak, and therefore useless against protocells.

Keywords:   by-analogy strategy, ontological strategy, type-token strategy, transcendence argument, protocells, slippery slope argument, methodological preliminaries

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