Abstract

Between 1932 and 1963 University of Pittsburgh anatomist Davenport Hooker, Ph.D., performed and filmed noninvasive studies of reflexive movement on more than 150 surgically aborted human fetuses. The resulting imagery and information would contribute substantially to new visual and biomedical conceptions of fetuses as baby-like, autonomous human entities that emerged in the 1960s and 1970s. Hooker’s methods, though broadly conforming to contemporary research practices and views of fetuses, would not have been feasible later. But while Hooker and the 1930s medical and general public viewed live fetuses as acceptable materials for nontherapeutic research, they also shared a regard for fetuses as developing humans with some degree of social value. Hooker’s research and the various reactions to his work demonstrate the varied and changing perspectives on fetuses and fetal experimentation, and the influence those views can have on biomedical research.

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
1086-3176
Print ISSN
0007-5140
Pages
pp. 132-160
Launched on MUSE
2014-04-21
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.