Suicide and Euthanasia

Moral and Legal Issues
  • Lewis Petrinovich
Part of the Critical Issues in Social Justice book series (CISJ)


When discussing issues of suicide and euthanasia Joel Feinberg’s (1986) scheme that considers suicide as an act involving one party/certain harm and euthanasia as one involving two party/certain harm will be used. Viewed from this perspective, the same principles that apply to suicide can be applied to euthanasia. If a person makes a rational request to die, if it is assured that the request is voluntary and that the person is in a stable, competent state that qualifies the individual as a moral agent, then it should be irrelevant whether the act of suicide is assisted. If the act is judged to be permissible, then it is proper to receive aid from a second party, with the major reservation that the second party should have no secondary (financial or personal) interests and the interests of relevant third parties are not harmed by the person’s death.


Moral Agent Responsible Leadership Assisted Suicide Moral Permissibility Voluntary Euthanasia 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lewis Petrinovich
    • 1
  1. 1.University of CaliforniaRiversideUSA

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