• 79,00 Kč

Publisher Description

The Case Against Perfection: Ethics in the Age of Genetic Engineering, Michael J. Sandel, 128 pages plus Notes and Index. The Belnap Press of Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2007. S12.85. Humans have long mystified, sanctified, or otherwise places special significance on their own reproductive process. Evidence for this ranges from 28,000-year-old Venus figurines of the Gravettian culture celebrating female fertility to in vitro fertilization (IVF) clinics and the high technology neonatal units of modern hospitals. Birth and first breath mark our entry into the world of opposites-good and evil, truth and falsehood, peace and violence. Not many years after taking our first breath, which some religious traditions mark as the moment of ensoulment, we develop into agents of choice-autonomous creatures making moral decisions about our own lives and our interactions with others. Now modern genetic and reproductive biotechnologies present us with new moral decisions associated with procreation itself. In The Case against Perfection, an expansion of an essay by the same title published in The Atlantic in 2004 (1), Harvard political philosopher/ethicist Michael Sandel argues against attempts to "perfect" humanity through genetic enhancement, while supporting the future use of gene therapy and embryonic stem cell technology to relieve human suffering. This position presumes that one can clearly distinguish between enhancement and therapy, a feat that no bioethicist has yet successfully accomplished; nevertheless, Sandel forges ahead to explain why he believes that using biotechnologies to enhance human physical and cognitive characters beyond normality toward "perfection" will ultimately desanctify human procreation.

Professional & Technical
August 1
Alabama Academy of Science

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