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  • Print publication year: 2008
  • Online publication date: May 2012

5 - Medical Ethics through the Life Cycle in China

from PART III - DISCOURSES OF MEDICAL ETHICS THROUGH THE LIFE CYCLE
Summary
This chapter provides an account of Chinese perspectives on ethical issues through the life cycle, and focuses on those at the beginning and end of life. Materials presented in the chapter demonstrate that this is certainly not the case with medical ethics in China. The current dominant and official line on such subjects as abortion, fetal life, truth telling about terminal illness, and euthanasia does not necessarily accord with historical values and practices. The chapter reviews Chinese perspectives on ethical issues at the two ends of human life provides further evidence on the diversity, richness, flux, changeability, historical complexity, openness for new possibilities, and contradictory elements of Chinese medical morality. The contemporary dominant Chinese views on abortion, eugenics, and euthanasia seem to support the commonly accepted view that individual human life is less respected in Chinese culture than in the West.
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The Cambridge World History of Medical Ethics
  • Online ISBN: 9781139195812
  • Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CHOL9780521888790
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