What do we as a society, and as parents in particular, owe to our children? Each chapter in Taking Responsibility for Children offers part of an answer to that question. Although they vary in the approaches they take and the conclusions they draw, each contributor explores some aspect of the moral obligations owed to children by their caregivers. Some focus primarily on the responsibilities of parents, while others focus on the responsibilities of society and government.
The essays reflect a mix of concern with the practical and the philosophical aspects of taking responsibility for children, addressing such topics as parental obligations, the rights and entitlements of children, the responsibility of the state, the role and nature of public education in a liberal society, the best ways to ensure adequate child protection, the licensing of parents, childrenís religious education, and childrenís health. Taking Responsibility for Children will be of interest to philosophers, advocates for childrenís interests, and those interested in public policy, especially as it relates to children and families.
1. Introduction: Taking Responsibility for Children / Robert Noggle and Samantha Brennan
2. Raising Children: Who Is Responsible for What? / Colin Macleod
3. Parental Responsibility / Jan Narveson
4. Children, Caregivers, and Friends / Amy Mullin
5. Parent Licensing and the Protection of Children / Mark Vopat
6. Responsibility and Childrens Rights: The Case for Restricting Parental Smoking / Samantha Brennan and Angela White
7. Political Liberalism and Moral Education: Reflections on Mozert v. Hawkins / Marc Ramsay
8. Education in a Liberal Society: Implications of Ross / Karen Wendling
9. Could There Be a Right Not to Be Born an Octuplet? / Laura Purdy
About the Editors:
Samantha Brennan is an associate professor and chair of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Western Ontario. Her main research interest is contemporary normative ethics and she is also interested in feminist moral and political philosophy. She has written numerous papers on moral rights and, with Robert Noggle, some on children's rights.
Robert Noggle is a professor of philosophy in the Department of Philosophy and Religion at the University of Central Michigan. His research interests include the relationship between moral theory and the nature of persons, personal autonomy, and the moral and political status of children. His most recent publications include "Special Agents: Children's Autonomy and Parental Authority" (in The Moral and Political Status of Children, edited by David Archard and Colin McLeod, 2003).