Teaching Bioethics through Literature
Rubina Naqvi

At this institution, where we provide care to nephrological and urological disorders and manage to perform related donor kidney transplants, we have a school for medical technology. Previously we presented and published our experience of designing curriculum and teaching bioethics to students of this school.(1) Further on we want to share our experience of teaching through humanities to same group of students who are getting B.S. degree in one of 5 categories, which includes haemodialysis, operation theater technicians, radiology technicians, laboratory technicians, and intensive care technicians. We offer different lectures from classical humanities disciplines (history, philosophy, comparative religion, literature), and the social sciences (cultural anthropology, sociology, political theory and public policy). The lectures contextualize medicine as a profoundly human activity, and invite students to consider what health care providers are, and what they do in a broad social, cultural, political, and intellectual context. Students explore the interrelationships among ethics, literature and medicine and acquire the theoretical framework to analyze ethical dilemmas common in clinical practice. Sometime we use a short movie or small piece of literature, prose or poetry, and let students lead discussion on issues addressed in that particular movie or piece of literature. Teaching bioethics to this group of people who are involved in patient care, in one way or other, is an important task and using different modalities to make the subject more interesting is the goal of study.

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