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Ethics in Medicine Virtue, Vice and Medicine by Jennifer Jackson

Ethics in Medicine Virtue, Vice and Medicine


Ethics in Medicine Virtue, Vice and Medicine by Jennifer Jackson

How, in a secular world, should we resolve ethically controversial and troubling issues relating to health care? Should we, as some argue, make a clean sweep, getting rid of the Hippocratic ethic, such vestiges of it as remain? Jennifer Jackson seeks to answer these significant questions, establishing new foundations for a traditional and secular ethic, which would not require a radical and problematic overhaul of the old. These new foundations rest on familiar observations of human nature and human needs. Jackson presents morality as a loose anatomy of constituent virtues that are related in different ways to how we fare in life, and suggests that in order to address problems in medical ethics, a virtues-based approach is needed. Throughout, attention is paid to the role of philosophy in medical ethics, and how it can be used to clarify key notions and distinctions that underlie current debates and controversial issues. By reinstating such concepts as justice, cardinal virtue, and moral duty, Jackson lays the groundwork for an ethics of health care that makes headway toward resolving seeming dilemmas in medical ethics today. This penetrating and accessible book will be invaluable to students of sociology and health care, as well as those who are interested in the ethical uncertainties faced by the medical world.


Jennifer Jackson has produced an excellent book ... one that should engage the interest of anyone prepared to make a little effort. It is a lively and refreshing work, full of argument and comprising a good mixture of scholarly caution and forthright commitment ... Readers will find thought-provoking material throughout ... Everywhere Jackson shows a great talent for taking us quickly and without jargon or pedantry into deep philosophical questions, and I warmly recommend her work.

Journal of Medical Ethics

About the Author

Jennifer Jackson is Senior Lecturer in the School of Philosophy, University of Leeds.

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Book Info

Publication date

16th December 2005


Jennifer Jackson

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Polity Press


244 pages


Medical ethics & professional conduct



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