Who “owns” human life? For example, does anyone have the right to take an individual’s life?

For this assignment, you will choose one of the three topics below (scroll all the way down to see the list of topics; they are given after the general instructions/information and are listed as ‘topic #1, topic #2, topic #3’) and write an essay of at least 4 pages, double-spaced, in Times New Roman 12 point font; your paper should be written in Standard English and done in MLA format. To submit your paper, click on ‘Essay 1.’ You should attach a file that can be opened with Microsoft Word (doc or docx); do not submit a pdf or type in the submission box. The purpose of the essay, regardless of the topic you choose below, is to analyze a philosophical question. Though there are hundreds (at least!) of philosophical questions, here are a few examples (Please note! These are simply examples of philosophical questions, NOT the topics for the essay; topics are below all of the instructions.):  Who “owns” human life? For example, does anyone have the right to take an individual’s life? The state? The individual?

 Does free will really exist? (And, if there is no free will, are people ever “responsible” for their acts? should we ever punish people?)

 What is the difference between living and being alive?

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 How do you know your perceptions are real?

 If God exists, why is there so much evil in the world?

 What is a person? Is it the mind, or the body?

Regardless of the topic you choose, your essay must include the following:  An original title (hint: ‘Essay 1’ is not an original title; nor is the title of the article you choose to write on)  An introduction with a thesis statement; if you need help with writing a thesis statement, read this advice on developing a thesis. Since the main idea of your essay is an analysis of a philosophical question, your thesis should most likely express this specifically (e.g. state the philosophical question your essay will be analyzing). Here is some VERY helpful advice on how to write your intro/begin your essay: https://writingcenter.fas.harvard.edu/pages/beginning-academicessay

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