Public Human Dissections - Right Or Wrong?

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Holiday rep whore
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March 22nd, 2006 at 02:04pm
Professor Gunther von Hagens the German doctor behind a controversial exhibition of flayed human corpses said on Wednesday he was planning to perform Britain's first public autopsy in 170 years.

His Body Worlds exhibition was slammed by critics as a sick freak show when it opened in London in March, said he would dissect the corpse of a 33-year-old German woman in front of 300 fee-paying audience members.

"I'm certainly not an artist, I'm a medical doctor and a professional. I'm a protagonist of anatomy for lay people."

The operation was relayed on giant screens and organs were taken round the audience on trays so they could take a closer look.

Von Hagens said the public autopsy would in part be a protest against the government's attitude to his work.

"It is a gesture for the public and also for the authorities," said von Hagens, who worked as an anatomist at Heidelburg University for 15 years.

Since the exhibition opened in London, more than 20 people have agreed to donate their bodies to von Hagens' institute for future preservations.

The exhibitions were said to take place to educate humans of organs, body parts and what is inside the human body. But what do you think about the showing of this on televion to be watched by millions? Is this a serious educational experiment or another morbid idea to get the Television channel more ratings?

And what do you generally think about this Professor disecting human bodies?

I, myself think it is cruel and disrespectful to the dead and deceased. They didn't ask for this. I know that i wouldn't wish for a million people examining the insides of my body when i die. I don't think many other people would either. I think it's cruel and inhumane. Surely people can learn this from books and other factual material?
Matt Smith
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March 22nd, 2006 at 02:24pm
Did the woman consent, firstly?

Consent here is the key issue. People donate their bodies to medical science every day. They give consent for their cadavers to be donated to a medical school or university, they give consent for their body to be dissected, cut up, tested, manipulated, all in the hope they might help find a cure for numerous diseases.

I have no problem with this kind of dissection; Indeed, I am very much in favor of it as long as the person consented whilst still alive.

But doing it in public?. Here is where the problem lies. It isn't excatly ethical to do it with crowds of morbid gossips overseeing the whole thing. If it is filmed for educational purposes in an educational setting, then perhaps I can see benefits, but there is still the question of consent.
Nine_Inch_Nails
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March 22nd, 2006 at 03:36pm
Like Meg said, if the person agreed to it I have no problems at all, actually I wouldn't mind going to one myself. It'd be interesting, and I'd learn far more than I do in my Biology lessons.

If they didn't give consent, then that doctor shouldn't have done it.
Kitti
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March 22nd, 2006 at 03:49pm
Nine_Inch_Nails:
Like Meg said, if the person agreed to it I have no problems at all, actually I wouldn't mind going to one myself. It'd be interesting, and I'd learn far more than I do in my Biology lessons.

If they didn't give consent, then that doctor shouldn't have done it.
Not only that, but if they did not give consent it is illegal, which is not an ethical debate at all.
~tre's_lost_nut~
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March 22nd, 2006 at 04:23pm
I think it's awesome. People need to learn these things somehow, I don't see why it all has to happen behind closed doors where no one can see it.
I guess it depends on how you feel about bodies after death... to me it doesn't matter what happens to my body when I'm gone, the important bit has gone already so what's the big deal?
If we can learn important things from it, then more power to the german!
Lucifers Angel
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March 22nd, 2006 at 04:30pm
i think its good because you can learn more that way like nine inch said, you will learn more like that than in your everyday biologoy lesson, if i could help people learn after i am dead then i dont see why not.
cactus.
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March 23rd, 2006 at 09:22am
It's a fact that in medical universities human disections are used as a teaching tool to this day. But in an exibition, to display organs...it's a bit of of place. You don't need to see real organs to be educated, there are books, plastic molds etc. And to show it on public television, it's the first public authopsy in 170 years, you said, I believe it isn't normal.
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March 23rd, 2006 at 11:30am
Jovanna:
It's a fact that in medical universities human disections are used as a teaching tool to this day. But in an exibition, to display organs...it's a bit of of place. You don't need to see real organs to be educated, there are books, plastic molds etc. And to show it on public television, it's the first public authopsy in 170 years, you said, I believe it isn't normal.
I've seen plastic organs and I've seen real ones, there is such a huge difference.
In our science classes, no one really paid attention when the teacher wheeled out the plastic skeleton and that creepy model with the different coloured bits you could take out..... but I remember everyone was watching pretty damn close when we got to look at real sheep's lungs and stuff.
It's a completely different experiance seeing what;s REALLY inside you. You can't experiance the same feelings when you're looking at a hard purple plastic thing that's supposed to represent the real organ.
a-dawg.
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March 23rd, 2006 at 01:12pm
Uhum. Not all the audience was fee-paying because it was on TV. My dad and brother watched it. I saw a bit but I didn't like it. If she gave consent though, that's up to her and it's a good way for people to learn.
NeoSteph
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March 23rd, 2006 at 01:15pm
I'm sure the people being dissected have consented but in my opinion that beside the point.

There's absolutely no scientific reason why human dissection should be made public. Obviously medical staff need to learn but to make entertainment out of it to me is degrading and reminds of the freak circus' in the victorian era.
Matt Smith
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March 23rd, 2006 at 01:17pm
I am actually toying myself with the idea of donating my body to medical science (the only reason im not 100% for it yet is I am not sure if it would clash with my wishes to have my organs donated).

The thing is, once i'm gone, I'd like to be able to help or educate some people. I'd like to leave some sort of mark on the world and if that means giving my organs to a person to save their life or giving my body to a university that might help cure an illness, then that'd be great.

In all honesty, If it was really for the greater good, I'd give permission for my cadaver to be dissected in public (for edcational purposes, I don't want to be butchered for fun).
a-dawg.
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March 23rd, 2006 at 01:19pm
NeoSteph:
I'm sure the people being dissected have consented but in my opinion that beside the point.

There's absolutely no scientific reason why human dissection should be made public. Obviously medical staff need to learn but to make entertainment out of it to me is degrading and reminds of the freak circus' in the victorian era.
Especially as it's on the fucking television.
~tre's_lost_nut~
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March 23rd, 2006 at 01:41pm
i guess it comes down to the fact that there isn't really any harm in it, is there?
Sara.
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March 25th, 2006 at 04:05pm
.:Cheeses_Of_Suburbia:.:
I think it's awesome. People need to learn these things somehow, I don't see why it all has to happen behind closed doors where no one can see it.
I guess it depends on how you feel about bodies after death... to me it doesn't matter what happens to my body when I'm gone, the important bit has gone already so what's the big deal?
If we can learn important things from it, then more power to the german!


back then people didn't have tv and internet to find out what was in you. so if any thing he was teaching the people about themselves.
anti-christ of suburbia
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June 16th, 2006 at 01:02pm
im not against human dissection, because consent is given by the person before they die to allow that to happen. its when students are made to dissect frogs that i object to, coz i dont see any consent from the animals before they were gassed to death
zdf_jammin
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June 16th, 2006 at 11:10pm
Holiday rep whore:


I, myself think it is cruel and disrespectful to the dead and deceased. They didn't ask for this. I know that i wouldn't wish for a million people examining the insides of my body when i die. I don't think many other people would either. I think it's cruel and inhumane. Surely people can learn this from books and other factual material?


you even stated the anti-argument in your little article. people donated their bodies to the exhibit. they did, in fact, ask for it.

im sure youve heard the term book smarts and street smarts? yea, you can learn a lot from books, but seeing the actual thing provides the most factual material.

i, myself, am going to see the exhibit the last weekend this June in the Twin Cities. I, honestly, cannot wait.

-zdf_jammin
Kurtni
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June 16th, 2006 at 11:14pm
Shocked As the way it looks, some of you think they just pick random bodies for this, they dont. They use bodies donated for medical science, which means the deceased person had to aprove. It's their body, so if they want it to be used for the better of medical science, let them.I would.
rollerpig
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June 17th, 2006 at 05:01am
I went to one of his Exhibitions when I was really young Shocked

And I agree with I_worship_Tré Think
Addison Montgomery.
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June 17th, 2006 at 10:18am
Same as lost angel
Kurtni
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June 17th, 2006 at 10:20am
lost angel:
im not against human dissection, because consent is given by the person before they die to allow that to happen. its when students are made to dissect frogs that i object to, coz i dont see any consent from the animals before they were gassed to death

The disector doesnt get to give consent either. I have to disect a frog or I could fluck my fresjman science class that semester. It's that big of a deal here Rolling Eyes
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