Biological identity and ‘restitution’ in Argentina. Further critical arguments


  • Mariana Córdoba CONICET / UBA
  • María José Ferreira Ruiz Universidad de Buenos Aires
  • Fiorela Alassia Universidad Nacional de la Patagonia San Juan Bosco



Personal identity, Restitution, Grandpaternity index, DNA, Produced identity, Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo


In this paper we will briefly explain the context in which the appropriation of 500 children occurred during the most recent Argentinian dictatorship, in order to analyze the political demand of identity restitution of these people. We will describe the phenomenon of restitution that took place thanks to the strategy of Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo, and we will analyze both the role of genetics on the restitution as well as some criticisms to a notion of biological identity considered to emerge from it. We will situate those criticisms in the philosophical debate over personal identity. The main purpose of this paper is to offer two arguments against an alleged genetic notion of personal identity. Firstly, a theoretical argument presents reasons on the basis of contemporary biological knowledge and, secondly, a practical argument refers to the productive role of biotechnologies. Finally, we will discuss some problems that arise from the criticisms themselves in order to give reasons for a defense of the restitution demand.


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