Bioethics and Women

Bioethics and Women : Across the Life Span

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All persons, while different from one another, have the same value: this is the author's relatively uncontroversial starting point. Her end point is no uncontroversial: an ideal of justice as human flourishing, based on each person's unique set of capabilities. Because the book's focus is women's health care, gender justice, a necessary component of justice, is central to examination of the issues. Classical pragmatists and feminist standpoint theorists are enlisted in support of a strategy by which gender justice is promoted. Two features of the book are unique: (1) the topics presented cover the entire life span of women, not just those related to reproduction; (2) a range of views about moral status are applied not only to fetuses but also to individuals already born. Attention to these features is intended to facilitate ethical consistency or moral integrity and respect for those who hold different moral views.
While delineating and defending the book's perspective, the first section provides an overview of bioethics, critiques prevalent approaches to bioethics and models of the physician-patient relationship, and sketches distinguishing aspects of women's health care that are prevalently neglected. Positions about moral status are also present. The second section identifies topics that are indirectly as well as directly related to women's health, such as domestic violence and caregiving. Brief cases illustrate variables relevant to each topic. Empirical and theoretical considerations follow each set of cases; these are intended to precipitate more expansive and critical examination of the issues raised. The last section is devoted to an egalitarian ideal that may be pursued through an ethic of virtue or supererogation rather than obligation. By embracing this ideal, according to the author, moral agents support a more demanding level of morality than guidelines or laws require.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 288 pages
  • 165.1 x 236.2 x 20.3mm | 521.64g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0195176170
  • 9780195176179

Table of contents

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Review quote

This is a well-written, thought-provoking book and a welcome addition to any library. * Doody's Notes * her [Mahodwald's] ethics stand as a postmodern ideal * Michele Pridmore-Brown, TLS * Mahowald succeeds in presenting a diverse series of bioethical issues relating to women's health. Her analysis is often sophisticated and original. * Medical Health Care and Philosophy journal * one of the nice aspects of this book is the extensive body cases that Mahowald employs. While other works in medical ethics tend to either present an abundance of cases without any analysis or a small number of cases with extensive analysis, this book succeeds in giving us a text that achieves both a wide range of cases and analyses sufficient to stimulte thoughtful discussion. * Leah McClimans, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice *
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