In this Book

Technicians of Human Dignity
summary
Technicians of Human Dignity traces the extraordinary rise of human dignity as a defining concern of religious, political, and bioethical institutions over the last half century and offers original insight into how human dignity has become threatened by its own success. The global expansion of dignitarian politics has left dignity without a stable set of meanings or referents, unsettling contemporary economies of life and power. Engaging anthropology, theology, and bioethics, Bennett grapples with contemporary efforts to mobilize human dignity as a counter-response to the biopolitics of the human body, and the breakdowns this has generated. To do this, he investigates how actors in pivotal institutions--the Vatican, the United Nations, U.S. Federal Bioethics--reconceived human dignity as the bearer of intrinsic worth, only to become frustrated by the Sisyphean struggle of turning its conceptions into practice.

Table of Contents

  1. Title Page, Copyright
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  1. Contents
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  1. Preface: The Motion of Inquiry
  2. pp. ix-xviii
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-22
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  1. I. Human Dignity and the Vatican
  2. pp. 23-24
  1. 1. The Church, the Secular, and Pastoral Power
  2. pp. 25-62
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  1. 2. The Ontology of Vocation: Gaudium et spes
  2. pp. 63-104
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  1. II. Human Dignity and the United Nations
  2. pp. 105-106
  1. 3. Incapacity by Design: Politics, Sovereignty, and Human Rights
  2. pp. 107-133
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  1. 4. Dignity and Governance: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
  2. pp. 134-164
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  1. diagnostic excursus: Economies of Life and Power
  2. pp. 165-198
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  1. III. Human Dignity and the President’s Council on Bioethics
  2. pp. 199-200
  1. 5. Bioethics and the Reconfiguration of Biopolitics
  2. pp. 201-237
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  1. 6. The Biopolitical Pastoral: Beyond Therapy
  2. pp. 238-274
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  1. Methodological Epilogue: Toward an Anthropology of Figuration
  2. pp. 275-286
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 287-312
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 313-318
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