1st Edition

Emergency Ethics Volume I

Edited By A.M. Viens, Michael J. Selgelid Copyright 2012

    Emergencies are extreme events which threaten to cause massive disruption to society and negatively affect the physical and psychological well-being of its members. They raise important practical and theoretical questions about how we should treat each other in times of ’crisis’. The articles selected for this volume focus on the nature and significance of emergencies; ethical issues in emergency public policy and law; war, terrorism and supreme emergencies; and public health and humanitarian emergencies. Together they demonstrate the normative implications of emergencies and provide multi-disciplinary perspectives on the ethics of emergency response.

    Contents: Introduction; Part I The Nature and Significance of Emergency: Definition of sovereignty, Carl Schmitt; Morality and emergency, Tom Sorell; Making sense of ’public’ emergencies, François Tanguay-Renaud. Part II Ethical Issues in Emergency: Lifeboat ethics and disaster: should we blow up the fat man?, Naomi Zack; The moral black hole, Per Sandin and Misse Wester; Disappearing without a moral trace? Rights and compensation during times of emergency, Simon Wigley; Deontology at the threshold, Larry Alexander; A first-order ethic of solidarity and reciprocity, David Wiggins; The ethics of emergencies, Ayn Rand. Part III Ethical Issues in Emergency Public Policy and Law: Specifying rights out of necessity, John Oberdiek; 'Necessity knows no law': on extreme cases and uncodifiable necessities, Alon Harel and Assaf Sharon; In extremis, Arthur Ripstein; Law, looting and lawlessness, Stuart P. Green; The ethics of price gouging, Matt Zwolinski. Part IV War, Terrorism and Supreme Emergencies: The ethics of emergency, Michael Ignatieff; Emergency ethics, Michael Walzer; Terrorism, morality and supreme emergency, C.A.J. Coady; Supreme emergencies revisited, Daniel Statman; Supreme emergencies without the bad guys, Per Sandin. Part V Public Health and Humanitarian Emergencies: Is human rights prepared? Risk, rights and public health emergencies, Thérèse Murphy and Noel Whitty; Ethics and global climate change, Stephen M. Gardiner; Living on a lifeboat, Garrett Hardin; Lifeboat Earth, Onora O'Neill; Famine, affluence and morality, Peter Singer; Distribution and emergency, Jennifer Rubenstein; Name index.


    A.M. Viens is a Research Fellow in the Institute for Medical Ethics and History of Medicine, Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany and an external member of the UCL Institute for Risk & Disaster Reduction, United Kingdom. Michael J. Selgelid is Associate Professor and Director of the Centre for Human Bioethics, Monash University, Australia.