Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Meeting the Epicurean challenge: a reply to ’Abortion and Deprivation'
  1. Nick Colgrove
  1. Philosophy, Baylor University, Waco, Texas, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Nick Colgrove, Philosophy, Baylor University, Waco, TX 76706, USA; nick_colgrove{at}


Anna Christensen argues that it is implausible to claim that abortion and murder are morally impermissible given that they deprive individuals of a future like ours (or ’FLO'). In this essay, I provide two responses to Christensen’s argument. First, I show that the premises upon which Christensen’s argument relies have implausible implications. Second, I provide a direct response to Christensen’s challenge, showing that abortion and murder are morally impermissible given that they do deprive individuals of an FLO. Doing so involves drawing a distinction between (1) Acts of killing and (2) Death (which is the outcome of acts of killing). Christensen focuses on the latter, but it is the former that is the proper subject in the abortion debate. I conclude that Christensen has failed to provide a response to arguments—like the one presented by Marquis —that murder and abortion are impermissible given that they deprive individuals of an FLO.

  • abortion
  • killing
  • death
  • ethics

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • Contributors NC is the sole author of this essay.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

Other content recommended for you