The Ohio State University
January 12th, 2005, 8:00 to 9:00 pm
Walter Hall 145
The question is so easy that small children can answer it. But this question that most small children can answer has repeatedly stumped courts and led them render decisions that are bizarre and unjustifiable. This question, that seems so simple, turns out to be anything but simple. The meaning of ‘paternity’ is complex and difficult and our legal system has yet to come to grips with the challenging questions that arise when the various elements of stereotypical fatherhood are exhibited in different men. It is unlikely that progress will be made on this issue until we re-think the notion of fatherhood from the ground up. This talk is the beginning of an examination of the philosophical, moral and legal foundations of paternity.