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Catholic Bioethics for a New Millennium - Anthony Fisher

Catholic Bioethics for a New Millennium


Published: 13th December 2011
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Can the Hippocratic and Judeo-Christian traditions be synthesized with contemporary thought about practical reason, virtue and community to provide real-life answers to the dilemmas of healthcare today? Bishop Anthony Fisher discusses conscience, relationships and law in relation to the modern-day controversies surrounding stem cell research, abortion, transplants, artificial feeding and euthanasia, using case studies to offer insight and illumination. What emerges is a reason-based bioethics for the twenty-first century; a bioethics that treats faith and reason with equal seriousness, that shows the relevance of ancient wisdom to the complexities of modern healthcare scenarios and that offers new suggestions for social policy and regulation. Philosophical argument is complemented by Catholic theology and analysis of social and biomedical trends, to make this an auspicious example of a new generation of Catholic bioethical writing which has relevance for people of all faiths and none.

About the Author

Anthony Fisher, OP is a Dominican friar and the Bishop of Parramatta, in Western Sydney. He is a Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, Professor of Moral Theology and Bioethics in the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and the Family, Melbourne and Adjunct Professor of Bioethics in the University of Notre Dame, Sydney.

'A work of excellent and accessible scholarship. A clear, coherent and contemporary treatment of bioethics in the Catholic tradition. Highly recommended to anyone interested in bioethics, Catholic or secular.' John Keown, Rose F. Kennedy Professor of Christian Ethics, Georgetown University, Washington DC 'These chapters show how the resources of the Catholic moral tradition can be brought to bear on novel and difficult bioethical problems. They will be of great use not least for those who wish to engage with a range of perspectives before coming to their own conclusions. I could think of no better or more thoughtful introduction to the discipline of Catholic bioethics.' Professor David Albert Jones, Director of the Anscombe Bioethics Centre 'Bishop Anthony Fisher's Catholic Bioethics for a New Millennium provides coherent and comprehensive coverage of many of the most disputed topics in bioethics. With both clarity and charity, Bishop Fisher dispels the myths and misunderstandings that obscure inherent dignity of the human person. He shows the compatibility of faith and reason and ably defends Catholic teaching against critiques from both dissenting theologians and secular philosophers.' Christopher Kaczor, Loyola Marymount University '... serves as a wonderful example of the very best of theological and philosophical reflection on contemporary issues of interest.' The Tablet '... this is a fine work on a variety of questions in Catholic bioethics ... Fisher is clearly an articulate evangelical witness for the 'gospel of life', and an intellectually formidable exponent of the Catholic tradition. This is an extraordinarily fine treatment of a John Paul ll approach to bioethics.' The Thomist

Forewordp. viii
List of abbreviationsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
How are we to do Bioethics?
Context: challenges and resources of a new millenniump. 13
Sex and life in post-modernityp. 13
Catholic engagement with the culture of modernityp. 21
Promising developmentsp. 27
Conclusionp. 37
Conscience: the crisis of authorityp. 38
The voice of consciencep. 38
The voice of the magisteriump. 52
Conscience in post-modernityp. 59
Where to from here?p. 66
Cooperation: should we ever collaborate with wrongdoing?p. 69
Traditional examplesp. 69
Five modern examplesp. 74
Some fundamental issues raised by these examplesp. 86
Why it matters so muchp. 94
Conclusionp. 97
Beginning of Life
Beginnings: when do people begin?p. 101
Method, thesis and implicationsp. 101
A closer look at the sciencep. 104
A closer look at the philosophyp. 112
Individuality criteriap. 119
Conclusionp. 130
Stem cells: what's all the fuss about?p. 131
Scientific potential and concerns about stem cellsp. 131
Ethical concerns about embryonic stem cellsp. 138
Social concerns about embryonic stem cellsp. 148
Abortion: the new eugenics?p. 152
The perennial debate about abortionp. 152
Pre-naral testing: a search-and-destroy mission?p. 160
The new abortion debatep. 169
Later Life
Transplants: bodies, relationships and ethicsp. 185
Love beyond deathp. 185
Conceptions of the body and relationships in tissue transplantationp. 186
Fashionable bioethical approaches to tissue procurementp. 191
Better bioethical approaches to tissue procurementp. 202
Ethical issues in tissue receptionp. 209
Conclusionp. 212
Artificial nutrition: why do unresponsive patients matter?p. 213
Civilization after Schiavop. 213
Why the unresponsive still matter: a philosophical accountp. 218
Why the unresponsive still matter: a theological accountp. 228
Some final questionsp. 241
Endings: suicide and euthanasia in the Biblep. 248
The problem of suicide and euthanasia in the Biblep. 248
Suicides and euthanasia in the Biblep. 255
The scriptural basis of Judeo-Christian opposition to suicide and euthanasiap. 265
Protecting Life
Identity: what role for a Catholic hospital?p. 275
A taie of two hospitalsp. 275
Current challenges for Catholic hospitalsp. 279
Catholic hospitals as diakoniap. 286
Catholic hospitals as martyriap. 290
Catholic hospitals as leitourgiap. 296
Conclusion: six tasks for a new centuryp. 299
Regulation: what kinds of laws and social policies?p. 302
A tale of three politiciansp. 302
Catholic principles for politiciansp. 304
Reasonable stances for a pro-life politicianp. 320
Some virtues of a pro-life politicianp. 324
Indexp. 328
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521253246
ISBN-10: 0521253241
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 333
Published: 13th December 2011
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.8 x 15.3  x 1.8
Weight (kg): 0.57
Edition Number: 1