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Africa Focus Debates on Contemporary Contentious Biomedical Issues

Munyaradzi Mawere

Publication Year: 2011

This is a vivid, thought-provoking and fascinating text on some contentious issues in contemporary medical ethics. The book acknowledges the contribution of ìAfrican traditionî and Western scholarship to the development of medical ethics as a university discipline. It questions the lack of consensus around such biomedical issues as euthanasia and traditional medicine. In many countries, the failure has resulted in public outcries. Its thrust centres on the nexus of practice and theory, and the importance of pragmatism and critical questioning in dealing with different cases on and around biomedicine. Its virtue is its significant shift from the traditional positions on selected biomedical issues to a more rigorous, pragmatic and critical questioning and understanding of the reasoning and positions of all involved and/or affected parties.

Published by: African Books Collective

Title page

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Copyright page

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Dedication

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Preface

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pp. vii-xi

This book is a product of my imaginative forays into biomedicine related issues. It generally focuses on selected burning issues in contemporary medical ethics. In particular, the book critically examines four issues: euthanasia, physicians/medical doctors’ strike, advertising in traditional...

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Introduction

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pp. xiii-xx

This is a book about euthanasia, physician strikes, advertising in traditional medicine and the principle of beneficence, four of the widely discussed and most contentious issues in medical ethics. The book is intended for scholars and students of philosophy, anthropology, sociology and...

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Chapter One

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pp. 1-21

Medical ethics like Ethics itself is a branch of practical philosophy. It is a very broad and far reaching inquiry in so far as it has developed from diversified sources and influences. More so, it has many complex moral issues that since time immemorial have troubled the history’s finest...

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Chapter Two

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pp. 23-41

Having paid attention to the concepts “ethics” and “euthanasia” separately, let us examine how and why the morality of the latter is a subject of debate. Arguments for and against euthanasia will therefore be presented in a bid to show how the morality of euthanasia is a contested notion...

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Chapter Three

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pp. 43-54

As has been seen in the previous discussion, both proeuthanasia and con-euthanasia arguments seem to be equally convincing. However, the truth is, both positions cannot be right at the same time. Either of the positions or both are wrong. It is in light of this observation that I propose the...

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Chapter Four

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pp. 55-74

The twenty first century African dilemma of euthanasia cannot be dismantled before looking at the basis of the African traditional view of euthanasia. And, maybe to understand better the African basis of euthanasia we need to understand the concept of tradition itself. The word tradition...

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Chapter Five

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pp. 75-100

Though physicians strike provides an opportunity to generate more knowledge about the process in which legitimacy of an organization can be restored, it meets with a great deal of resistance not only by the public but from within the medical profession. This chapter critically examines the legitimacy of...

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Chapter Six

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pp. 101-130

This chapter critically examines the morality of advertising by practitioners in spiritual healing and herbal medicine heretofore referred to as traditional medicine, in southern African urban societies. While the subject of traditional medicine has been heavily contested in medical studies in the...

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Chapter Seven

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pp. 131-142

Medical ethics is a system of moral principles that apply values and judgments to the practice of medicine and as a scholarly discipline, it encompasses its practical application in clinical settings as well as work on its history, philosophy, theology, anthropology and sociology¹. As such there are a...

Back Cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9789956726882
Print-ISBN-13: 9789956726028

Page Count: 166
Publication Year: 2011