Aas co-authors bioethics textbook, article in Journal of Medicine & Philosophy

Along with Collin O’Neil and Chiara Lepora, Sean Aas, Senior Research Scholar at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics and an Assistant Professor of Philosophy Department, has co-authored a textbook on bioethics in Routledge’s “50 Puzzles, Paradoxes, and Thought Experiments” series. The book “collects 50 cases—both real and imaginary—that have been, or should be, of special interest and importance to philosophical bioethics.” Cases include “bioethical context, a concise narrative of the case itself, and a discussion of its importance, both for broader philosophical issues and for practical problems in clinical ethics and health policy.” The book includes a detailed list of suggested readings and cases on emerging bioethical issues (especially, issues around disability, social justice, and the practice of medicine in a diverse and globalized world) in addition to classic cases.

Dr. Aas has also published an article titled “What We Argue about When We Argue about Death” in the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. His argument is that a “broadly biological conceptualization of human death cannot constitute a basis for agreement in a pluralistic society characterized by a variety of reasonable views on the nature of our existence as embodied beings.” In dialogue with the work of the late KIE scholar Robert A. Veatch, he suggests that “what we should argue about, when we argue about death, is when and why people lose their rights-claims to the protection and promotion of their basic bodily functioning.”

Dr. Aas’s primary areas of research are bioethics, metaethics, and social and political philosophy, with a significant focus on issues of disability: disability as social construct, disability and political egalitarianism, disability and health. Learn more about his work.