In this paper, I explain the demands of filial obligations from act and rule consequentialism. More specifically, I defend a rule-consequentialist explanation of filial obligations, and identify a few factors in relation to the determination of filial demands; they include the costs of internalization of filial obligations, and the proportions of the young and the old generations in a population pyramid. I believe that in a society with an aging population, we may accept a strong view of filial obligation. Towards the end of the paper, I explain that rule-consequentialism is compatible with certain special views of filial obligations, such as the gratitude theory and the special goods theory; these theories represent ways in which adult children and their parents may obtain special goods from engaging in the relationship. Copyright © 2015 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.
CitationSin, W. (2016). Caring for parents: A consequentialist approach. Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy, 19(1), 3-10.
- Long-term caregiving
- Filial obligation
- Special goods theory