life liberty the defense of dignity the challenge for bioethics

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Life Liberty And The Defense Of Dignity

Author : Leon Kass
ISBN : 9781594030475
Genre : Medical
File Size : 22. 29 MB
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At the onset of "Life, Liberty and the Defense of Dignity," Leon Kass gives us a status report on where we stand today: "Human nature itself lies on the operating table, ready for alteration, for eugenic and psychic 'enhancement, ' for wholesale redesign. In leading laboratories, academic and industrial, new creators are confidently amassing their powers and quietly honing their skills, while on the street their evangelists are zealously prophesying a posthuman future. For anyone who cares about preserving our humanity, the time has come for paying attention." Trained as a medical doctor and biochemist, Dr. Kass has become one of our most provocative thinkers on bioethical issues. Now, in this brave and searching book, he also establishes himself as a prophetic voice summoning us to think deeply about the new biomedical technologies threatening to take us back to the future envisioned by Aldous Huxley in "Brave New World." As in Huxley's dystopia, where life has been smoothed out by genetic manipulation, psychoactive drugs and high tech amusement, our own accelerating efforts to master reproduction and genetic endowment, to retard aging, and to conquer illness, imperfection, and death itself are animated by our most humane and progressive aspirations. But we are walking too quickly down the road to physical and psychological utopia, Kass believes, without pausing to assess the potential damage to our humanity from this brave new biology. In a series of meditations on cloning, embryo research, the human genome project, the sale of organs, and the assault on mortality itself, Kass evaluates the ongoing effort to break down the natural boundaries given us and to remake the human body into an instrument of our will. What does it mean to treat nascent human life as raw material to be exploited? What does it mean to blur the line between procreation and manufacture? What are the proper limits to this project for the remaking of human nature? These are the questions we should be asking to prevent runaway scientism with its utopian longings from reshaping humankind in the image of our own choosing. Kass believes that technology has done and will continue to do wonders for our health and longevity and that we have much to be thankful for. But there is more at stake in the biological revolution that saving life and avoiding death. We must also strive to protect the ideas and practices that give us dignity and keep us human. "Life, Liberty and the Defense of Dignity" challenges us to confront the posthuman future that may await us by thinking deeply about the life and death issues we face today.

Ethical Issues In Neurology

Author : James L. Bernat
ISBN : 0781790603
Genre : Medical
File Size : 23. 17 MB
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Written by an eminent authority from the American Academy of Neurology's Committee on Ethics, Law, and Humanities, this book is an excellent text for all clinicians interested in ethical decision-making. The book features outstanding presentations on dying and palliative care, physician-assisted suicide and voluntary active euthanasia, medical futility, and the relationship between ethics and the law. New chapters in this edition discuss how clinicians resolve ethical dilemmas in practice and explore ethical issues in neuroscience research. Other highlights include updated material on palliative sedation, advance directives, ICU withdrawal of life-sustaining therapy, gene therapy, the very-low-birth-weight premature infant, the developmentally disabled patient, informed consent, organizational ethics, brain death controversies, and fMRI and PET studies relating to persistent vegetative state.

Sacred Cells

Author : Ted Peters
ISBN : 144220771X
Genre : Science
File Size : 36. 83 MB
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Sacred Cells? tells the little-known story of Christian theologians who have been actively involved with leading scientists in the lab to determine the ethical implications of stem cell research. And contrary to popular expectation, these Christians have been courageously advocating in favor of research. Three of these dynamic theologians tell their story in this book, providing a brief history of stem cell science and outlining why people of faith can and should support research.

Rationality And The Genetic Challenge

Author : Matti Häyry
ISBN : 9781139486705
Genre : Law
File Size : 76. 70 MB
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Should we make people healthier, smarter, and longer-lived if genetic and medical advances enable us to do so? Matti Häyry asks this question in the context of genetic testing and selection, cloning and stem cell research, gene therapies and enhancements. The ethical questions explored include parental responsibility, the use of people as means, the role of hope and fear in risk assessment, and the dignity and meaning of life. Taking as a starting point the arguments presented by Jonathan Glover, John Harris, Ronald M. Green, Jürgen Habermas, Michael J. Sandel, and Leon R. Kass, who defend a particular normative view as the only rational or moral answer, Matti Häyry argues that many coherent rationalities and moralities exist in the field, and that to claim otherwise is mistaken.

Moral Soundings

Author : Dwight Furrow
ISBN : 0742533700
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 47. 74 MB
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This topically organized, interdisciplinary anthology provides competing perspective on the claim that western culture faces a moral crisis. Using clearly written, accessible essays by well-known authors in philosophy, the social sciences, and the humanities, the book introduces students to a variety of perspectives on the current cultural debate bout values that percolates beneath the surface of most of our social and political controversies.

Humans In Nature

Author : Gregory E. Kaebnick
ISBN : 9780199347230
Genre : Medical
File Size : 52. 68 MB
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Contemporary debates over issues as wide-ranging as the protection of wildernesses and endangered species, the spread of genetically modified organisms, the emergence of synthetic biology, and the advance of human enhancement, all of which seem to spin into deeper and more baffling questions with every change in the news cycle, often circle back to the same fundamental question: should there be limits to the human alteration of the natural world? A growing number of people view the human capacity to alter natural states of affairs -- from formerly wild spaces and things around us to crops and livestock to our own human nature -- as cause for moral alarm. That reaction raises a number of perplexing philosophical questions, however: Can we identify "natural" states of affairs at all? Does the idea of being morally concerned about the human relationship to nature make any sense? Should such a concern influence public policy and politics, or should government stay strenuously neutral on such matters? Through a study of moral debates about the environment, agricultural biotechnology, synthetic biology, and human enhancement, Gregory E. Kaebnick, a research scholar at The Hastings Center and editor of the Hastings Center Report, argues that concerns about the human alteration of nature can be legitimate and serious, but also that they are complex, contestable, and of limited political force. Kaebnick defends attempts to identify "natural" states of affairs by disentangling the nature/artifact distinction from metaphysical hoariness. Drawing on David Hume, he also defends moral standards for the human relationship to nature, arguing that they, and moral standards generally, should be understood as grounded in what Hume called the "passions." Yet what counts as "natural" can be delineated only roughly, he concludes, and moral standards for interaction with nature are less a matter of obligation than of ideals. Kaebnick also concludes, drawing on an interpretation of the liberal principle of neutrality, that government may support those standards but must be careful not to enforce them. Thus Kaebnick looks for a middle way on debates that have tended toward polarization. "As differences between nature and artifact become steadily less substantial, problems about preservation run to the core of how people can make sense of themselves, of each other, and of our shared world. Kaebnick's solutions are creative and compelling, theoretically elegant and politically practical. Providing distinctive ways forward, when much academic and policy discussion seems exhausted, his book demands wide attention. In return, it inspires hope." - James Nelson, Michigan State University

Embryo Politics

Author : Thomas Banchoff
ISBN : 0801461073
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 64. 9 MB
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Since the first fertilization of a human egg in the laboratory in 1968, scientific and technological breakthroughs have raised ethical dilemmas and generated policy controversies on both sides of the Atlantic. Embryo, stem cell, and cloning research have provoked impassioned political debate about their religious, moral, legal, and practical implications. National governments make rules that govern the creation, destruction, and use of embryos in the laboratory-but they do so in profoundly different ways. In Embryo Politics, Thomas Banchoff provides a comprehensive overview of political struggles aboutembryo research during four decades in four countries-the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and France. Banchoff's book, the first of its kind, demonstrates the impact of particular national histories and institutions on very different patterns of national governance. Over time, he argues, partisan debate and religious-secular polarization have come to overshadow ethical reflection and political deliberation on the moral status of the embryo and the promise of biomedical research. Only by recovering a robust and public ethical debate will we be able to govern revolutionary life-science technologies effectively and responsibly into the future.

The Linacre Quarterly

Author :
ISBN : IND:30000125071534
Genre : Medicine
File Size : 54. 86 MB
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The Ethics And Governance Of Human Genetic Databases

Author : Matti Häyry
ISBN : 9781139464048
Genre : Law
File Size : 47. 68 MB
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The Medical Biobank of Umeå in Sweden, deCODE's Health Sector Database in Iceland, the Estonian Genome Project and the UK Biobank contain health data and genetic data from large populations. Some include genealogical or lifestyle information. They are resources for research in human genetics and medicine, exploring interaction between genes, lifestyle, environmental factors and health and diseases. The collection, storage and use of this data raise ethical, legal and social issues. In this book, first published in 2007, bioethics scholars examine whether existing ethical frameworks and social policies reflect people's concerns, and how they may need to change in light of new scientific and technological developments. The ethical issues of social justice, genetic discrimination, informational privacy, trust in science and consent to participation in database research are analyzed, whilst an empirical survey, conducted in the four countries, demonstrates public views of privacy and related moral values in the context of human genetic databases.

Leading A Worthy Life

Author : Leon R. Kass
ISBN : 9781594039423
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 82. 20 MB
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Most American young people, like their ancestors, harbor desires for a worthy life: a life of meaning, a life that makes sense. But they are increasingly confused about what such a life might look like, and how they might, in the present age, be able to live one. With a once confident culture no longer offering authoritative guidance, the young are now at sea—regarding work, family, religion, and civic identity. The true, the good, and the beautiful have few defenders, and the higher cynicism mocks any innocent love of wisdom or love of country. We are super-competent regarding efficiency and convenience; we are at a loss regarding what it’s all for. Yet because the old orthodoxies have crumbled, our “interesting time” paradoxically offers genuine opportunities for renewal and growth. The old Socratic question, “How to live?”, suddenly commands serious attention. Young Americans, if liberated from the prevailing cynicism, will readily embrace weighty questions and undertake serious quests for a flourishing life. All they (and we) need is encouragement. This book provides that necessary encouragement by illuminating crucial (and still available) aspects of a worthy life, and by defending them against their enemies. With chapters on love, family, and friendship; human excellence and human dignity; teaching, learning, and truth; and the great human aspirations of Western civilization, it offers people who are looking on their own for meaning, and as well as to people who are looking to deepen what they have been taught or to square it with the spirit of our time.

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