The Evolution of Bioethics in the 20th Century


This course will address important themes in Bioethics and how they evolved through the 20th Century. Issues will include the ethical conduct of human subjects research (including study of misadventures like the Tuskegee syphilis project); contemporary thought regarding end-of-life decisions; the effect of advancing technology on ethical reasoning regarding pregnancy (prenatal genetic testing, the changing limits to viability of newborns, and attitudes toward abortion); research in children; and the issues of public health like quarantine and the right to refuse vaccination. 3 units.