THE FUTURE OF BIOETHICS: THREE DOGMAS AND A CUP OF HEMLOCK
Article first published online: 3 MAY 2010
© 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Volume 24, Issue 5, pages 218–225, June 2010
How to Cite
DAWSON, A. (2010), THE FUTURE OF BIOETHICS: THREE DOGMAS AND A CUP OF HEMLOCK. Bioethics, 24: 218–225. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8519.2010.01814.x
- Issue published online: 3 MAY 2010
- Article first published online: 3 MAY 2010
- medical ethics;
- public health ethics;
In this paper I argue that bioethics is in crisis and that it will not have a future unless it begins to embrace a more Socratic approach to its leading assumptions. The absence of a critical and sceptical spirit has resulted in little more than a dominant ideology. I focus on three key issues. First, that too often bioethics collapses into medical ethics. Second, that medical ethics itself is beset by a lack of self-reflection that I characterize here as a commitment to three dogmas. Third, I offer a more positive perspective by suggesting how bioethics may benefit from looking towards public health ethics as a new source of inspiration and direction.