Confucianism and abortion

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In Far Eastern Asian countries, China, Korea, and Japan, induced abortion has been a widely accepted practice, and Confucianism has been blamed as a cause of such bad act. However, many blames (e.g., sexism) ascribed to Confucianism in Eastern Asian morality are actually products of limited societal development. Confucianism is not a dogmatic, closed philosophy; it has emphasized the community value and family linkage. In addition, Confucianism tends to seek a harmonious and practical solution for any ethical issue in the manner of "via media" based on respect for human life and universal love. Regarding abortion, Confucianism sees the fetus in the womb as a developmental process like other entities in the universe, not a substantial entity as found in a Western philosophical tradition. Such process could be discontinue with any justifiable reason, for example, to save the mother's life threatened by the pregnancy. This attitude of Confucianism toward induced abortion could be explained by its unique ontological and epistemological perspectives.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAbortion
Subtitle of host publicationGlobal Positions and Practices, Religious and Legal Perspectives
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9783030630232
ISBN (Print)9783030630225
StatePublished - 13 Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2021.


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