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Beyond Polarization: Peter Singer and Christian Ethics



Interaction between Peter Singer and Christian ethicists, to the extent that it has happened at all, has been unproductive and often antagonistic. Singer sees himself as leading a 'Copernican Revolution' against a sanctity of life ethic, while many Christians associate his work with a 'culture of death.' In his recent book, Charles Camosy argues that this polarized understanding of the two positions is a mistake. While their conclusions about abortion and euthanasia may differ, there is surprising overlap in Christian and Singerite arguments, and disagreements are interesting and fruitful. Christians and Singerites can even make common cause in matters such as global poverty and the dignity of non-human animals.

Peter Singer is Australia’s best-known public intellectual. He is Laureate Professor at the University of Melbourne’s Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics and Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University’s Center for Human Values.

Charles Camosy is a theologian and ethicist at Fordham University, whose work focuses on bioethics, Catholic social teaching, and distributive justice.

Tony Coady was Boyce Gibson Professor of Philosophy at the University of Melbourne from 1990-1998 and is now Vice Chancellor’s Fellow and Professorial Fellow in the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics at that university.

Friday, 12 April 2013 | 6.00pm

Carrillo Gantner Theatre
Sidney Myer Asia Centre
The University of Melbourne

Location map

Contact Rochelle Sullivan in the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies at or 9035 8358.

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Date created: 27 July 2010
Last modified: 22 September 2011
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