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Theological Bioethics: Participation, Justice, and Change (Moral Traditions series) [Paperback]

Lisa Sowle Cahill
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

November 16, 2005 1589010752 978-1589010758

The field of bioethics was deeply influenced by religious thinkers as it emerged in the 1960s and early 1970s. Since that time, however, a seemingly neutral political liberalism has pervaded the public sphere, resulting in a deep suspicion of those bringing religious values to bear on questions of bioethics and public policy.

As a theological ethicist and progressive Catholic, Lisa Sowle Cahill does not want to cede the "religious perspective" to fundamentalists and the pro-life movement, nor does she want to submit to the gospel of a political liberalism that champions individual autonomy as holy writ. In Theological Bioethics, Cahill calls for progressive religious thinkers and believers to join in the effort to reclaim the best of their traditions through jointly engaging political forces at both community and national levels.

In Cahill's eyes, just access to health care must be the number one priority for this type of "participatory bioethics." She describes a new understanding of theological bioethics that must go beyond decrying injustice, beyond opposing social practices that commercialize human beings, beyond painting a vision of a more egalitarian future. Such a participatory bioethics, she argues, must also take account of and take part in a global social network of mobilization for change; it must seek out those in solidarity, those involved in a common calling to create a more just social, political, and economic system.

During the past two decades Cahill has made profound contributions to theological ethics and bioethics. This is a magisterial and programmatic statement that will alter how the religiously inclined understand their role in the great bioethics debates of today and tomorrow that yearn for clear thinking and prophetic wisdom.


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Price for all three: $74.61

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Cahill is to be commended for seeing the critical need for theological bioethics. Her argument, in its substance and its scope, makes eminent sense." -- America



"Covers considerable ground and includes theoretical and practical positions sure to engage readers who operate from diverse disciplines and vantage points. Cahill writes with the care and clarity so characteristic of her work, offering substantive scholarship in accessible prose. The volume justly will become a standard text in graduate and seminary classrooms, and portions may be used in upper-level and undergraduate courses." -- Journal of Religion



"Offers a vision and a voice that enriches the field of bioethics and invites the reader to take specific practical steps: actions that will eventually become true democratic activism, both locally and globally." -- The Way



"A comprehensive and forceful vision of theological bioethics that goes beyond, without discrediting, traditional approaches to standard beginning and end-of-life issues that often characterize theological engagement with bioethics." -- American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly



"Faithful at once to the tradition of Catholic social teachings and to the biblical mandate of liberation, Lisa Cahill brings the 'preferential option for the poor' to bear on public discourse about bioethics. The resulting book enriches reflection about bioethics by its attentiveness to global issues of justice, to the social conditions which form and limit decisions, and to the dominant cultural narratives of liberal individualism, scientific progress, and the market. Cahill helps her readers, moreover, not only to think in new ways about some of the issues in bioethics but also to act more compassionately. If more of us who are interested in theological bioethics were to follow her call to engagement and to justice, there might really be change." -- Allen Verhey, professor of Christian Ethics, The Divinity School, Duke University



"Lisa Sowle Cahill has given us a first-class text on bioethics that proposes an engagement of theology in public bioethics. For anyone who wants a comprehensive social analysis of bioethical issues that combines the theological and the ethical, this is certainly the book to read. It will make an excellent text for scholars and the classroom." -- James J. Walter, Austin and Ann O'Malley Professor of Bioethics and chair, the Bioethics Institute, Loyola Marymount University



"Cahill promises -- and delivers, Theological Bioethics, a new social and engaged ethics. Not every reader will agree that theological bioethics must move beyond critical reflection, normative judgments, and theoretical accounts to 'taking part in a global social network of mobilization for change.' But no thoughtful reader will be allowed to rest comfortably in the status quo. This carefully researched text issues a serious challenge to use theological bioethics to alleviate the social conditions that create these problems." -- Carol Taylor, director of the Center for Clinical Bioethics, Georgetown University



"In Theological Bioethics, Lisa Sowle Cahill gives us an excellent, essential book in which she demonstrates compellingly the vital role of an authentic progressive theological voice in contemporary bioethics. With solid theoretical grounding and a rich panoply of practical applications for enduring controversies, Cahill convincingly argues for a participatory theology that keeps social justice, the common good, and the 'achingly latent' transcendent aspects of biomedicine at the fore." -- Margaret E. Mohrmann, MD, PhD, associate professor of pediatrics and religious studies, University of Virginia

About the Author

Lisa Sowle Cahill is the J. Donald Monan Professor of Theology at Boston College. A former president of the Society of Christian Ethics and the Catholic Theological Society of America, she is the author of Sex, Gender, and Christian Ethics; Family: A Christian Social Perspective; 'Love Your Enemies': Discipleship, Pacifism, and Just War Theory; and other books.


Product Details

  • Series: Moral Traditions series
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press (November 16, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1589010752
  • ISBN-13: 978-1589010758
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 6 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #467,109 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book in ethics March 4, 2014
Format:Paperback
I recommend this book which is useful not only for its masterful summary of the moral magisterium on bioethics, but also for its treatment of such various issues in bioethics today.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Worthy of Careful Read September 17, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent presentation of alternative ways through the ethics wars and uncritical pragmatism, but it isnot easy going. Read it, study it, follow the references, and spend enough time with it to master the author's proposals for steady and peaceful progress. This is certainly preferable to righteous ranting on the one hand and destructive occupy on the other.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars from Georgetown University Press April 4, 2008
Format:Paperback
The field of bioethics was deeply influenced by religious thinkers as it emerged in the 1960s and early 1970s. Since that time, however, a seemingly neutral political liberalism has pervaded the public sphere, resulting in a deep suspicion of those bringing religious values to bear on questions of bioethics and public policy. As a theological ethicist and progressive Catholic, the author does not want to cede the "religious perspective" to fundamentalists and the pro-life movement, nor does she want to submit to the gospel of a political liberalism that champions individual autonomy as holy writ. In this book, she calls for progressive religious thinkers and believers to join in the effort to reclaim the best of their traditions through jointly engaging political forces at both community and national levels. In her eyes, just access to health care must be the number one priority for this type of "participatory bioethics." She describes a new understanding of theological bioethics that must go beyond decrying injustice, beyond opposing social practices that commercialize human beings, beyond painting a vision of a more egalitarian future. Such a participatory bioethics, she argues, must also take account of and take part in a global social network of mobilization for change; it must seek out those in solidarity, those involved in a common calling to create a more just social, political, and economic system. During the past two decades the author has made profound contributions to theological ethics and bioethics. This is a magisterial and programmatic statement that will alter how the religiously inclined understand their role in the great bioethics debates of today and tomorrow that yearn for clear thinking and prophetic wisdom.
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
Theological Bio-Ethics: Participation, Justice, And Change by Lisa Sowle Cahill (J. Donald Monan Professor of Theology at Boston College and former President of the Society of Christian Ethics and Catholic Theological Society of America) is an in-depth introductory study of the bio-ethical practice of Christian-Catholic students or practitioners of the biological sciences, and the ethical approaches to employ within the context of such controversial issues. Readers will discover a progressive understanding of generally con-temporary constructs of Christian understandings on the social conditions, individualistic, and scientific progression that form public perspective of bio-ethics and the modern pursuit of a greater scientific understanding of the truths that define life. Theological Bio-Ethics is very strongly recommended to all readers in practice of the Christian faith for its informative content on important modern and subversive sciences and progression.
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