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Category Archives: Ethics of science
The glass is half full, but any of the controversial sciences like genetics or stem cells have not yet been poured into the glass. The economical and cultural states of our country reflect the simple fact that, as a people, we are not ready for this medical revolution, and PBS uses key scenes to warn […] Continue reading
The PBS Nova special “Cracking the Code” brought up a number of interesting possibilities about the future of DNA research. Most interesting to me was the special’s take on testing for specific genetic diseases and predispositions. “Sometimes, there may be a test, but it might take twenty years, or fifty years. Fifty years to find […] Continue reading
Richard Powers’s book Generosity, An Enhancement might center its narrative around the seemingly unflappable, amicable Thassa Amzwar, but is the book actually ABOUT her? Killian C. Quigley doesn’t seem to think so; using quotes from Walter Pater’s Studies in the History of the Renaissance and Danny Penman, he argues that the fascination with Thassa is […] Continue reading
Of course, certain cultural and historical values would affect the decisions and attitudes of their citizens, and Erin Pellarin applies this to bioethics, Chromosome 6, and Never Let Me Go. Using the perceived differences between Britain and America, she argues that a question of humanity becomes a nationalist debate. And perhaps, using this theory, we can […] Continue reading
The “reanimation” of life can refer to much more than zombie media would have us automatically think. Killian C Quigley describes a 1984 court case where the legality of the marketplace for byproducts of life, in order to “reanimate life” came into question. But he also raises the question, “What is life?” Is it a […] Continue reading
Ethical controversy over science is nothing new: in this post, Erin Pellarin compares the modern-day controversy over human stem-cells being placed in animal embryos to the controversy in 1667 over blood transfusions from one species to another. The main concern is always over the faint line between human and animal; at what point does this […] Continue reading
The ending of Oryx and Crake is one of the more controversial parts of the book, partially for its vague cliffhanger, partially for the implications that Jimmy’s actions have on his current state of mind. This is what Erin Pellarin questions, theorizing that perhaps Jimmy has been brainwashed by his solitude and Crake’s purpose for […] Continue reading
Killian C. Quigley draws a comparison between Steven Shapin’s The Scientific Life and Martin Robbins’s article “Scientists say…”, detailing the relationship between scientific progress and its popular perception. Robbins’s article focuses on the journalistic spread of misinformation, which can lead to misconceptions of science by the public. Meanwhile, Shapin’s purpose is to reevaluate the individual’s […] Continue reading
Perhaps one of the greatest impediments to scientific advancement is the question of morality and virtue, especially concerning the commercial value of the growth of scientific technology. Erin Pellarin examines this in the blog post below, but she brings up additional questions of monetary gain; how exactly does money fit into the discussion of virtue […] Continue reading