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Theology, Disability and the New Genetics: Why Science Needs the Church Paperback – 21 Jun 2007

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group - T & T C (21 Jun. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0567045587
  • ISBN-13: 978-0567045584
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 2.1 x 23.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,748,999 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


'This is a brave book ... We should be grateful to the contributors for underscoring so many important theological drivers ... The book is successful in underlining the significance of those with disabilities who are already with us.' Theological Book Review, Volume 20, No 2, 2008 'The book is not [...] short on diversity, and raises a number of issues that are pertinent for theologians and pastors in particular. There is much in this book that I would heartily endorse ... I believe that this book deserves to be widely read and appreciated both within and outside the Christian churches.' Theology, May 2009 "The current enthusiasm for the "new genetics" is decisively challenged by this important book on disability and genetics. The exaggerated claims associated with genomics is here challenged by reminding us there is nothing "wrong" with the disabled. Rather there is much wrong with us to the extent we would seek to eliminate the disabled in the name of compassion. Hopefully these essays will receive the attention they deserve."--Sanford Lakoff ."..The contributors address issues of genetic technology from a theological perspective informed by the experience of disability, whether their own or that of persons close to them. They refuse to understand disability primarily in terms of suffering or tragedy, taking as their starting point the conviction that the lives of even those with profound disabilities are worth living and possess 'godly possibility.' Through testimony, theological reflection and ethical analysis, the contributors explore the difference that this perspective might make to persons with disabilities and to their larger communities." Amy Plantinga Pauw, Christian Century, May 6, 2008--Sanford Lakoff "This book brings together thought-provoking papers on how advances in genetics have both constructive and negative challenges. This book is easy to read despite the complexity of the topic - it succeeds in conveying the strenghts and weaknesses, highlighting the dilemmas posed by a technology that promises detection and cure." - Annalu Waller, The Expository Times, March 2009--Sanford Lakoff "Expository Times " "I believe this book deserves to be widely read and appreciated both within and outside the Christian churches." - Celia Deane-Drummond, Theology, Vol. CXII No. 867, May/June 2009--Sanford Lakoff "Theology " "A timely, sobering assessment of the new technologies of genetic testing. Many of those with disabilities are wary of genetic technologies, fearing that acceptance of tests to prevent the birth of those with disabilities will only add to the rejection of those who live among us with the very same conditions. Theological scholars and the voices of the disabled come together in this book to wrestle with the promises and perils of today's genetic medicine. The result is a much-needed look, not just at technology, but at ourselves as people whose very souls are shaped by the tools we use. This book is an invitation to ponder one of the most disturbing questions of our time: will our acceptance of genetics make us less accepting of others?" Ron Cole-Turner, H Parker Sharp Professor of Theology and Ethics Pittsburgh Theological Seminary--Sanford Lakoff "This rich and fascinating volume brings together experts from a variety of backgrounds - theologians, doctors, scientists and people with disabilities - to explore the phenomenon of disability and new genetics from a wide range of different perspectives, from biographical reports to theological treatises. These diverse voices unite to explore one of the most pressing contemporary ethical questions from a distinctively Christian perspective, and manage to push the debate on the new genetics to a new level. Those generally interested in these questions, and theologians in particular, will discover numerous insights in each of the book's chapters as well as from the implicit and explicit ways the texts dialogue with each other."Martin Wendte, University of Tubingen --Sanford Lakoff "Insofar as technology has been driven throughout the era of modern science by confidence in the perfectibility of the natural world, the presence of intractable imperfection has both inspired and troubled its greatest accomplishments. The papers collected in this volume are concerned with one area in which this problematic has become acute, namely that of human disability. They bring to light many of the personal, political, scientific and theological dimensions of new attempts by genetic technologies in particular to make human beings better. Aware of the moral and intellectual perplexities of the current situation. the editors call for a theological 're-imagining' to provide the frame in which faithful discernment of God's presence will be possible. Readers will be challenged by the descriptive accounts of experiences of disability, as well as by the constructive efforts to direct genetic science into its own best potential under the creative and redemptive authority of God."--Sanford Lakoff


Recent developments in genetic technology promise to eradicate disease and disability. Such promises pose challenging questions with regard to our understanding of what it is to be human. Taking a Christian and theologically informed viewpoint, this book explores and challenges our concept of disability. This book will seek to explore the question: does our current attitude toward the use of genetic technologies in contemporary practice risk a slide into social habits which are implicitly evil and destructive of the humanness of our society? The central theological question that will be addressed by the book is: Is the image of humanness that underpins the implicit and explicit assumptions of new genetic technology compatible with Christian theological understandings of what it means to be human and to live humanly? This book aims to explore these questions within a multidisciplinary context with a view to developing an informed practical theological perspective which can guide the theory and practice of the church as it engages with the world around the complex issues that are emerging in response to new genetic technology.

John Swinton, and Brian Brock have drawn together an international team of the top scholars from medicine, ethics and theology to produce a unique text which will lay out the complex problems genetic technology raises, and offer fresh understandings and solutions that are theoretically significant and practically vital.

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Amazon.com: 1.0 out of 5 stars 1 reviews
Joseph P. Tevington
1.0 out of 5 starsThis Book Needs "the Church"
13 June 2009 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
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