Sharing our body and blood: Organ donation and feminist critiques of sacrifice

Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 28 (1):89 – 114 (2003)
Abstract
Feminist analysis of cultural mythology surrounding organ donation offers a critical perspective on current U.S. transplant policy. My argument is three-pronged. First, I argue that organ donation is appropriately understood as a sacrifice. Structurally, donation accords both to general and to specifically Christian archetypes of sacrifice. The characterization of donation as sacrifice resonates in the cultural psyche even though it is absent in public rhetoric. Second, I characterize widespread feminist concerns about the over-glorification of sacrifice. These concerns provide a helpful framework for considering whether the sacrifice of organ donation is over-glorified in our culture. Third, I consider several specific aspects of organ recruitment and organ allocation. Each demonstrates an over-glorification of sacrifice that leads to a dangerous "routinization" of sacrifice. None of these excesses are addressable without due attention to the symbolic import of organ donation and transplantation. I close by suggesting lessons my analysis offers to Christian churches who support donation, to the discourse of bioethics, and to the general public.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 12,088
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA
Similar books and articles
Nikola Biller-Andorno (2002). Gender Imbalance in Living Organ Donation. Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 5 (2):199-203.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

49 ( #36,369 of 1,101,947 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

9 ( #28,723 of 1,101,947 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.