Thomas Douglas


Prospective parents are sometimes partial towards their future children, engaging in what I call ‘pre-parental partiality’. Common sense morality is as permissive of pre-parental partiality as it is of ordinary parental partiality—partiality towards one’s existing children. But I argue that pre-parental partiality is harder to justify: love-based justifications for ordinary parental partiality typically provide weaker reasons in support of pre-parental partiality than in support of parental partiality, and other candidate justifications fail to make up for this normative deficit.