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Bioethics and the Holocaust

Dr. Stacy Gallin, DMH is founder of the Maimonides Institute for Medicine, Ethics, and the Holocaust, and works in the Medical Humanities field, focusing on the philosophy of psychiatry, bioethics and the Holocaust, with attention to various ways to remedy the healthcare system in America. Gallin’s course syllabus focuses on the state of biomedical ethics in World War II, noting how the Holocaust is a unique example of medically sanctioned genocide. The biomedical ethics established during the Third Reich remain relevant for current medical and scientific practice. Gallin notes: “Eugenics, disability studies, end-of-life care, genetic testing, and human experimentation are all topics that are vital to the history as well as the future of bioethics. Exploring the pivotal role played by science and medicine in the labeling, persecution, and eventual mass murder of those deemed ‘unfit’ is essential to preventing other instances of human rights abuses in modern society.”


Purpose:


This course will focus on the abrogation of biomedical ethics in World War II Germany, demonstrating how the Holocaust is a unique example of medically sanctioned genocide. The biomedical ethical considerations brought to light as a result of the alliance between medicine and the Nazis remain relevant for current medical and scientific practice. Eugenics, disability studies, end-of-life care, genetic testing, and human experimentation are all topics that are vital to the history as well as the future of bioethics. Exploring the pivotal role played by science and medicine in the labeling, persecution, and eventual mass murder of those deemed “unfit” is essential to preventing other instances of human rights abuses in modern society.


Objectives:

  1. Bioethics and the Holocaust: An Introduction

  2. Eugenics: The Pseudo-Scientific Foundations of Genocide

  3. The International Eugenics Movement

  4. The Biological State: Eugenics in Germany

  5. German Medicine and the Nazi Doctors

  6. A Method Behind the Madness: How Nazi Ideology Became National Policy

  7. Euthanasia and The Final Solution

  8. Nazi Medical Experiments

  9. Nazi Medical Experiments Debate

  10. The Nuremberg Trial: The Birth of Bioethics

  11. Current Ethical Implications: Beginning of Life Care, Current Ethical Implications: End of Life Care

  12. Medicine After the Holocaust: The Future of Bioethics



Syllabus Bioethics and the Holocaust
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