Bioethics


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Beauty and aesthetics Bioethics Comparative philosophy Cosmopolitanism Death Ethics History of ideas Knowledge Logic and probability Meaning and the good life Metaphysics Philosophy of language Philosophy of mind Philosophy of religion Philosophy of science Political philosophy Thinkers and theories Values and beliefs Virtues and vices

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Essay/
Consciousness and altered states
Consciousness regained

After years of deep therapeutic pessimism, emerging therapies offer hope for patients trapped between coma and wakefulness

Aurore Thibaut

‘Take if you need, give if you can’: a local response to the COVID-19 outbreak in Naples, Italy, 30 March 2020. Photo by Ciro De Luca/Reuters

Essay/
Public health
It didn’t have to be this way

A bioethicist at the heart of the Italian coronavirus crisis asks: why won’t we talk about the trade-offs of the lockdown?

Silvia Camporesi

Photo by Ed Kashi/VII

Essay/
Medicine
No patient is an island

How a concern to protect the autonomy of patients leads to the exclusion of families just when they are needed the most

Anita Ho

Photo by Jagoda Matejczuk/Getty

Essay/
Animals and humans
Rats are us

They are sentient beings with rich emotional lives, yet we subject them to experimental cruelty without conscience. Why?

Kristin Andrews & Susana Monsó

This colour-enhanced frontal view of the head, neck and shoulders confirms brain death by absence of blood flow to the brain. Photo by Living Art Enterprises, LLC/SPL

Essay/
Bioethics
Neither person nor cadaver

The body is warm, but the brain has gone dark: why the notion of brain death provokes the thorniest of medical dilemmas

Sharon Kaufman

Photo by Christopher Capozziello from his book The Distance Between Us, exploring the life of his brother Nick, their differences, and the anger and shame of being the healthy twin. Nick has cerebral palsy.

Essay/
Human rights and justice
Is crip the new queer?

Disability activists who look to queer theory for their politics end up limiting their real transgressive potential

Rahila Gupta

Coloured X-rays of sections through the head of a patient showing the electrodes (light lines) of a deep brain stimulator (DBS) implanted in the brain. Photo by Zephyr/Science Photo Library

Essay/
Neuroscience
Deep brain stimulation

DBS is an incredibly promising intervention for intractable neurological and psychiatric illness. What are the risks?

Jonathan Pugh

Lizzie #1. Photo © 2009 KevinHoran.com from the series Chattel

Essay/
Animals and humans
Eating someone

Farmed animals have personalities, smarts, even a sense of agency. Why then do we saddle them with lives of utter despair?

Lori Marino

Photo by Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg via Getty

Essay/
Illness and disease
Chronic

For big pharma, the perfect patient is wealthy, permanently ill and a daily pill-popper. Will medicine ever recover?

Clayton Dalton

The Provincial Training School in Red Deer, Alberta, opened in October 1923 and was designated to be a residential institution for the training of people deemed ‘mentally defective’. Photo courtesy eugencisarchove.ca

Essay/
Bioethics
Eugenics never went away

Thought eugenics died with the Nazis? Think again: the eugenic programme of sterilising the ‘unfit’ continues even today

Robert A Wilson

Cris Cristofaro holds his dog Dino as his beloved pet is sedated during an in-home euthanasia on 9 May 2012 in New York City. Photo by John Moore/Getty

Essay/
Ageing and death
Die like a dog

Pet dogs often have a peaceful death that forestalls protracted suffering and pain. Why can’t we do the same for humans?

Joseph Pierre

Deer roadkill on the highway in Texas. Photo by Bob Anderson/Getty

Essay/
The environment
Snarge

Our insatiable desire for acceleration exacts a mortal toll on the animal world. It’s time for humans to slow right down

Gary Kroll

A Sister of Charity at the New York Foundling Hospital in 1943. Photo by Nina Leen/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty

Essay/
Anthropology
Infanticide

There is nothing so horrific as child murder, yet it’s ubiquitous in human history. What drives a parent to kill a baby?

Sandra Newman