The author argues that genetic technologies can never be fully sepa­rated from their eugenic ends. Because of this, the Church’s sexual ethic must be integrated with its social teaching to respond faithfully to ethical issues that arise with the use of genetic technologies. The author discusses, first, the Catholic opposition to eugenics from the turn of the twentieth century to the official papal condemnation of eugenics in 1930; next, the Church’s reaction to advances in DNA research in the 1950s and 60s; and finally, the shift from optimism to caution from the 1970s on, as new genetic technologies emerged in embryonic stem cell research, genetic counseling, and gene therapy. The author explores both the sources on which the Church has drawn in responding to genetic advances and the social issues that should prove fruitful for con­templation in the future.
Keywords Applied Philosophy  Business and Professional Ethics  Catholic Tradition
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ISBN(s) 1532-5490
DOI 10.5840/ncbq201515346
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