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Paperback | $15.00 Short | £10.95 | ISBN: 9780262517423 | 308 pp. | 6 x 9 in | 4 charts| November 2011

Progress in Bioethics

Science, Policy, and Politics
Foreword by Harold Shapiro


Bioethics has become increasingly politicized over the past decade. Conservative voices dominated the debate at first, but the recent resurgence of progressivism and the application of its fundamental values (social justice, critical optimism, practical problem solving) to bioethical issues have helped correct this ideological imbalance. Progress in Bioethics is the first book to debate the meaning of progressive bioethics and to offer perspectives on the topic both from bioethicists who consider themselves progressive and from bioethicists who do not. It aims to begin a dialogue and to provide a foothold for readers interested in understanding the field.

The chapter authors, leading scholars in the field, discuss the meaning of progressive bioethics, the rise of conservative bioethics, the progressive stance toward biotechnology, the interplay of progressive bioethics and religion, and progressive approaches to such specific policy issues as bioethics commissions, stem cell research, and health-care reform.

About the Editors

Jonathan D. Moreno is David and Lyn Silfen University Professor of Ethics and Professor of Medical Ethics and of the History and Sociology of Science at the University of Pennsylvania

Sam Berger is an Assistant General Counsel at the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.


“The essays in this book are beautifully written, with each author presenting a well-reasoned thesis in an eloquent and passionate yet respectful and civil manner. In an age in which controversy is all too often accompanied by confrontation and argumentative discourse, the overall tone of this anthology is refreshing. The book successfully meets the goal of promoting a greater understanding and appreciation of progressivism in bioethics...For scholars, clinicians, and policy-makers whose work is enhanced by a deeper understanding of the primary intellectual debate in bioethics, Progress in Bioethics offers a provocative and stimulating educational experience.” , Andrew R. Barnosky, Journal of the American Medical Association

“This volume is a ‘veritable manifesto’ of the progressivist bioethicist perspective on the major issues of the bioethical movement today.” — Edmund D. Pellegrino, The Quarterly Review of Biology


"Progressive eras in American society come and go but quality scholarship endures. So it is with Progress in Bioethics, a rich anthology considering the recent politicalization of bioethics and the place of progressive voices in that debate. Editors Jonathan D. Moreno and Sam Berger are to be lauded for a timely volume that maps the shifting political and philosophical terrain of bioethics. Distinguished essayists provide a shrewd analysis of the current administration's reconsideration of its predecessor's policies on questions like stem cell research and the importance President Obama has placed on value-neutral science policy. Although Progress in Bioethics makes a strong case for a progressive bioethics, its tone is never strident. Readers on the right and left will find valuable insights here and perhaps even a blueprint for finding common cause."
Joseph J. Fins, Chief, Division of Medical Ethics, Professor of Medicine and Public Health, Weill Cornell Medical College, author of A Palliative Ethic of Care: Clinical Wisdom at Life's End

"Finally we have a thorough exploration of the nature and implications of a progressive approach to bioethics, a needed counterweight to conservative attitudes toward science. Progress in Bioethics deserves a place on the shelf of every thoughtful person interested in the intersection of science, ethics, and public policy."
Chris Mooney, author of The Republican War on Science

"No matter what your political persuasion, reading this stimulating and provocative book will help you better understand debates over controversial topics in bioethics."
Bernard Lo, Professor of Medicine, and Director, Program in Medical Ethics, University of California, San Francisco

"The essays in this important volume taught me a great deal about how to think about the issues at the intersection of politics, science, and ethics. It's a subject deserving of every progressive person's attention, and, as the nuanced arguments herein suggest, the answer to the question of what constitutes a liberal bioethics is complex, which makes this volume all the more indispensable a guide."
Michael Tomasky, Editor, Democracy: A Journal of Ideas