A philosophical investigation of conceptual and normative issues associated with one of several broad domains of social and political thought: human rights, the varieties of human conflict, and war and peace. Examines both classical and recent texts. Brings theoretical perspectives to bear on contemporary issues.
SPRING 2012-- Course Title--Bioethics--
Since the mid-20th century, biomedical techniques and technologies have become increasingly complex. The development of powerful life-saving drugs, successful organ transplantation techniques, life-support technologies, and genetic testing and stem cell research are posing complex and important questions about the ethics of biomedical care and research in contemporary, global society. The field of bioethics arose in response to these questions. In this course, we will examine the historical roots of bioethics, learn some of the field's guiding principles, and explore several areas of current bioethical debate. Our primary mode of inquiry will be through examining case studies of areas of bioethical uncertainty and/or conflict.
Student learning goals
Become familiar with the origins of bioethics as a field of inquiry and practice in American medicine.
Understand the four ethical principles that have been most influential in American biomedical ethics (respect for autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence, and justice) and be able to apply them in relation to current bioethical controversies.
Think critically about the application of bioethical thought cross-culturally and internationally.
Analyze contemporary bioethical dilemmas from multiple perspectives.
General method of instruction
Large and small-group discussion with some lectures for background. Students will participate in group debate-oriented assignments that will involve in-class presentation of bioethical arguments.
Ability to do college-level reading and writing.
Class assignments and grading