Ludus non tollit abusum: Zur ethischen Beurteilung virtueller Missbrauchsabbildungen

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Virtual child sexual abuse materials featuring realistic representations of children in the form of computer-generated images, rather than real children, have become a growing trend in recent years. How can such virtual images of abuse - which are almost indistinguishable from real images of child abuse - be assessed? What criteria can we use to arrive at an ethically sustainable position? In this paper, I will argue that the production, dissemination, and use of virtual images of abuse are neither justifiable nor excusable from an ethical perspective. To this end, I will present various potential ways of approaching an assessment of such images and will examine each of these approaches with regard to their validity. I will show that consequentialist, deontological, and virtue-ethical approaches are not yet sufficient to support a categorical rejection of virtual images of abuse, and that it is only possible to arrive at a convincing approach if the social-ethical perspective is also taken into account.

Translated title of the contributionLudus non tollit abusum: On the ethical evaluation of virtual images of abuse
Original languageGerman
JournalZeitschrift fur Evangelische Ethik
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)34-48
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 01.01.2023
Externally publishedYes

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