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Bioethics, Social Class, and the Sociological Imagination



Last year I published a short article urging bioethicists to carefully examine the question of what ought to constitute the canonical issues topics and questions driving research and teaching in bioethics. Why some subjects dominate the field whereas other topics are regarded as matters for scholars in other disciplines is a question that has intrigued me for nearly a decade. How are the boundaries of bioethics established? What factors influence research agendas and the creation of bioethics curricula? How do funding agencies, editors, and leading scholars shape the field of bioethics? These questions are increasingly receiving scrutiny from Charles Bosk, Raymond De Vries, and other researchers as they explore the sociology of bioethics and the “construction” of the “ethical enterprise.”



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