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By Juha Räikkä, Jukka Varelius

This quantity gathers jointly formerly unpublished articles targeting the connection among choice variation and autonomy in reference to human enhancement and within the end-of-life context. the price of person autonomy is a cornerstone of liberal societies. whereas there are varied conceptions of the thought, it really is controversial that on any believable realizing of person autonomy an independent agent must keep in mind the stipulations that circumscribe its activities. but it has additionally been prompt that permitting one’s suggestions to impact one’s personal tastes threatens autonomy. whereas this phenomenon has bought a few cognizance in different components of ethical philosophy, it has seldom been thought of in bioethics. This booklet combines for the 1st time the themes of choice version, person autonomy, and selecting to die or to augment human capacities in a different and accomplished quantity, filling an incredible wisdom hole within the modern bioethics literature.

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Instead, the right explanation is to be found in the extent to which 11 For a more substantial argument on this point, see Bruckner (2009). 3 Adaptation, Autonomy, and Authority 41 a preference does, or does not, capture my genuine values. And this is not an historical, but rather a time-slice, property. 9 TA1-TA3 Time-Slice accounts differ from historical accounts insofar as they identify autonomous preferences not on the basis of how these preferences came to be or the processes by which they were developed or instilled, but rather on the basis of facts about the relation between that preference and other psychological attitudes (perhaps counterfactual or idealized) of the person in question.

Thus autonomous preferences are those over which one has control. If I can choose to maintain a preference or to rid myself of it, and I choose to maintain it, it would appear that this preference displays a form of autonomy in a perfectly respectable sense of that term. Looking closely at this proposal, it is obvious that it cannot work. This is because the reasons to maintain adaptive preferences remain the same whether one has control over them or not. And so if one has control over whether to adapt to one’s preferences or not, there will be a number of cases that render adaptation rationally justified.

To see this in more detail, take the historical accounts. 4 Of course, what this amounts to is controversial, and is answered in different ways by each historical account. HA1-HA3 reflect the fact that many people think it plausible to believe that the concept of autonomy is tied very closely to the concept of acting for reasons, or at least acting for what one believes to be reasons. And so it may be plausible to say–as is reflected by HA1–that if a particular preference is the result of a process I engage as a result of reasons that I myself recognize (whether or not these are genuine reasons for action), this process generates autonomous preferences.

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