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“Taking Pregnancy Seriously in Ethics and Epistemology Workshop I”, L/T C, Avenue Campus, University of Southampton, 18th June 2014.

Speakers: Rebecca Roache (Oxford); Angela Fenwick (Southampton) & Rose Wiles (Southampton); Rosamund Scott (KCL); Hazel Biggs (Southampton)

In applied ethics, much has been written in relation to pregnancy – based either on a conception of pregnancy as the ‘hosting of a stranger’, or focusing on the rights of the foetus whilst disregarding that foetus’s existence as intertwined with that of its mother. Neither of these two approaches takes the unique physical, relation and transformative state of pregnancy seriously. Pregnancy also raises epistemological issues. Does the radically transformative character of pregnancy mean that those who have never been pregnant are excluded from certain kinds of knowledge about pregnancy and its consequences? And are pregnant women taken seriously now as knowers and testifiers? These epistemological issues have important implications for the appropriate way to approach the ethical debate.

This workshop is one of a series of four in the project Taking Pregnancy Seriously in Metaphysics. Ethics and Epistemology, funded by the Southampton Ethics Centre and the University of Southampton ‘Adventures in Research’ Scheme. It will be followed by two workshops on Taking Pregnancy Seriously in Metaphysics (September 2014) and one further workshop on Taking Pregnancy Seriously in Ethics and Epistemology (April 2015).


9:45 am registration and coffee in North Corridor.

10.15-10.30 Introductory remarks

10.30-11:45 ‘Ventouse or forceps: whose delivery, whose decision?’, Angela Fenwick & Rose Wiles (Southampton)

11:45am – 1.00 ‘Taking Pregnancy Seriously: PGD, prenatal screening/diagnosis and ‘maternal-fetal conflict’ during pregnancy and at birth’, Rosamund Scott (KCL)

1.00– 2.30 Lunch

2.30 -3.45 – ‘Is unwanted pregnancy an illness?’ Rebecca Roache (Oxford)

3.45-4.15 Tea

4.15 – 5.30 ‘Autonomy & enforced caesarean sections’, Hazel Biggs (Southampton)

5.30 – 6.00: Round-up

6.00 – Drinks

7.30 – Dinner

To register please email and (please include both addresses in your email) by 1st June 2014.

Registration is free but delegates must provide/ pay for their own meals and accommodation. (Details of optional organized meals and accommodation will be emailed on registration/ request.)

If you would like to attend but childcare duties render your attendance difficult, please contact the organisers (as far in advance as possible).


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