2012 年 30 巻 p. 52-62
In this article, I show the significance of Hans Jonas' ethics of responsibility in the situation wherein the ethical problems of technology extend from the present to the future generations. Jonas used his consideration of the problem of bioethics of experiments on a human body as his opportunity to begin his study of ethics in earnest. At the same time, he criticizes the re-definition of death as this enables and promotes the practice of organ transplants from an irreversibly comatose donor. Both human body experiments and the re-definition of death are considered from the viewpoint of the defenseless victim who is sacrificed in the name of medical progress to save lives and conquer disease. Jonas insists on the "-descending order of permissibility-" as a general principle to prevent sacrificing the defenseless victim. According to Jonas' philosophy of life, it is not appropriate to understand the human mind and body as separate entities. Life itself is not lost even if it is assumed that consciousness does not recover if the body lives. Extraction of organs from such a person who is incapable of putting up a defense constitutes a sacrifice of the defenseless victim. Jonas positions future generations as the ultimate victim in "the principle of responsibility" and advocates a new ethic to forbid the act that offers them in a one-sided sacrifice. He reforms ethics from a form that assumes the individual and autonomous subject to a form that considers the relationship between the subject and object of the responsibility. Jonas shows that the fundamental human character, that is, two paradigms of the responsible subject, "parent" and "politician" enables one to make a self-sacrifice through one's identification with his/her problem. The ethics of Hans Jonas is imbued with the idea of prevention of sacrifice of the victim.