Genetics

Baby-Making: The Fractured Fulfillment of Huxley's Brave New World, Part I

GATTACA is just one of the examples from literature and popular culture that entice us to slow down and think about some of the most serious ethical questions facing us today. Hollywood has given us The Sixth Day on human cloning, The Island on involuntary organ donors, John Q on organ transplantation, and Minority Report on neuroethics, to name just a few. These are joined in literature by works such as C.S. Lewis’ That Hideous Strength and, of course, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.

Sometimes there is an eerie immediacy to the sci-fi futuristic scenarios depicted in these works. Scripts have had to be altered when real-day science threatened to overtake the in-the-future premise of the plot. Meanwhile, the moral conversation, the bioethical reflection, has struggled to keep up. Law and policy lag even farther behind, often feebly attempting to regulate only after a catastrophe or dispute.

Podcast Episode: 
159

Medicine's Public Enemy Number One: Prevailing Attitudes towards the Least of Those with Down Syndrome

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Recently, I undertook a comprehensive review of Obstetrics and paused to reflect upon the dramatic changes wrought for practice during the intervening interval. The time elapsed represents slightly more than a single generation. Nonetheless, I am left anxious for those persons who will yet inherit Down syndrome. They are indeed endangered, but still full members of humanity.

Podcast Episode: 
110

Technology in Biblical and Historical Contexts -- Part 2

In this edition of The Bioethics Podcast, we bring you the second in an ongoing series entitled "CBHD Classics," where we periodically revisit classic audios from our CBHD archives. In this particular edition, we bring you the conclusion of a two-part broadcast of Nancy Pearcey and a paper she presented at Trinity International University entitled “Technology in Biblical and Historical Contexts.” In this piece, Ms. Pearcey explains the inability of most people to justify their moral intuitions about technology, and the conversational opportunity that creates.

Podcast Episode: 
70

Technology in Biblical and Historical Contexts -- Part 1

In this edition of The Bioethics Podcast, we bring you the second in an ongoing series entitled "CBHD Classics," where we periodically revisit classic audios from our CBHD archives. In this particular edition, we bring you the first of a two-part broadcast of Nancy Pearcey and a paper she delivered at Trinity International University “Technology in Biblical and Historical Contexts.” In this piece, Ms. Pearcey explains the inability of most people to justify their moral intuitions about technology, and the conversational opportunity that creates.

Podcast Episode: 
69

Genetically Enhancing Athletes?

Readers of both the academic and popular literature in bioethics will be well aware that genetic and other forms of so-called human enhancement are clearly on the drawing board. No one knows how long it will take to develop these technologies, but they are most certainly coming. Already, of course, through the use of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, human embryos are screened for undesirable genetic traits and embryos with those traits are not transferred to a woman’s uterus—they are discarded or used in embryo-destructive research.

Podcast Episode: 
67

Chiseling Away at David

Michelangelo’s David is a fitting metaphor for what it means to be human.  Considering assisted reproductive technologies, genetic testing and intervention, and using technology for purposes beyond therapy, we are chiseling away at the David that we know.  A brief look at the art and the science through the lens of bioethics is the theme of this presentation.

Podcast Episode: 
60

Ethics and Genetics of Human Behaviour

Issues: 

A behaviour can often be defined as the conduct of a person, the manner and mode of action in which this person treats others and the way he or she responds to a stimulus.[1] Characterising the behaviour of a person is therefore not a simple affair, with any research in this field becoming a highly complex undertaking, including many variables such as social but also genetic effects.

Podcast Episode: 
47

La ética y la genética del comportamiento humano

Issues: 

Un comportamiento puede ser definido frecuentemente como la conducta de una persona, la manera o modo de acción en la que esta persona trata a otros y la forma en que responde a un estímulo.[1] Por lo tanto, caracterizar el comportamiento de alguien no es algo sencillo, y toda investigación en este campo se vuelve una empresa altamente compleja que incluye muchas variables, como los efectos sociales pero también los genéticos.

Podcast Episode: 
47

Bioethics at the Movies: Review of Minority Report

Based on a Philip K. Dick short story, Minority Report is set in the year 2054. The “pre-crime division” of the police force is pilot-testing a program in which crimes are stopped before they are committed. John Anderton (Tom Cruise) leads pre-crime division made up of members who combine SWAT team/special forces skills to intervene in crimes and murders before they happen and thus save society from evil. Crime is down 90%, no murders have occurred in the previous six years in the Washington DC pilot-test area, lives are saved, and society is protected because of the ability to predict crimes before they happen.

Podcast Episode: 
45

A Review of the Novel NEXT

Michael Crichton’s latest novel, NEXT, like most of his previous novels, is based on rigorous research of a specific technical topic—in this case genetic science. Unlike his previous novels, the plot of NEXT does not center on a single protagonist. Instead, like the movies Crash, Syriana, and Babel, NEXT tells a number of stories, some of which intersect and all of which revolve around or relate to some aspect of genetic science.

Podcast Episode: 
40

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