Procreating means nothing more than the creation of human beings. ‘To procreate’ can of course be loosely employed to mean ‘to have sex’. However, strictly speaking, procreation is the generation of new lives. Heterosexual sexual activity can be procreative, but it need not be. Equally, and conversely, non-sexual acts and practices might be procreative, including those such as, most obviously, cloning and some forms of artificial mixed gamete reproduction. This distinction is important because some ethical issues arise from the manner in which procreation is managed, or from a view as to what the proper function of sexual activity is. Thus we might object to cloning inasmuch as it is an ethically problematic technique for creating new lives, independently of the fact that new lives are created or that those lives are subsequently of a certain kind. Those of a conservative persuasion who see sex as having a natural end – namely procreation – will see all forms of non-procreative sex as morally objectionable. In what follows I shall disregard these matters.
|Title of host publication||The Cambridge Companion to Life and Death|
|Publisher||Cambridge University Press|
|Number of pages||12|
|Publication status||Published - 01 Jan 2011|