Journal of Medical Humanities

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 79–91 | Cite as

“How dare you sport thus with life?”: Frankensteinian fictions as case studies in scientific ethics

  • Robert C. Goldbort
Article
  • 120 Downloads

Abstract

Fictional scenarios involving “hard” science offer what are in effect case studies of scientific ethics. From his analysis of Shelley's novel, biologist Leonard Isaacs constructed a model of a “Frankenstein scenario,” applicable to the dilemmas posed by the advancement of science in our time, as well as to fiction about science by such contemporary writers as Robin Cook and Michael Crichton. The special contribution of fiction to the study of ethics is that it both reflects and evaluates reality's infinite permutations. In reflecting and judging, the fictional scenarios engage our moral imagination and compel us to confront our personal ethos in relation to the evolving ethos of science.

Keywords

Special Contribution Moral Imagination Scientific Ethic Effect Case Contemporary Writer 

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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert C. Goldbort
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EnglishIndiana State UniversityTerre Haute

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