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Document Details :
Title: De brede ethiek van Arnold Burms en Herman De Dijn
Author(s): VANMECHELEN, Xavier
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Filosofie
Volume: 76 Issue: 2 Date: 2014
In De sacraliteit van leven en dood (The Sacredness of Life and Death) Arnold Burms and Herman De Dijn take a strong anti-theoretical stance on bio-ethical issues. They contend that when we answer bio-ethical questions, we should pay more attention to the symbolic distinctions which structure common sense moral sensitivity, such as those between human and animal, man and woman, parent and child, and so on. In this critical review I argue that their rejection of modern ethical theories is over-simplifying and that their refusal to ground symbolic distinctions more thoroughly in nature is flawed. In my view the book gives us little to hold on to when we deal with bio-ethical questions.