The international growth and influence of bioethics has led some to identify it as a decisive shift in the location and exercise of 'biopower'. This book provides an in-depth study of how philosophers, lawyers and other 'outsiders' came to play a major role in discussing and helping to regulate issues that used to be left to doctors and scientists. It discusses how club regulation stemmed not only from the professionalising tactics of doctors and scientists, but was compounded by the 'hands-off' approach of politicians and professionals in fields such as law, philosophy and theology. The book outlines how theologians such as Ian Ramsey argued that 'transdisciplinary groups' were needed to meet the challenges posed by secular and increasingly pluralistic societies. It also examines their links with influential figures in the early history of American bioethics. The book centres on the work of the academic lawyer Ian Kennedy, who was the most high-profile advocate of the approach he explicitly termed 'bioethics'. It shows how Mary Warnock echoed governmental calls for external oversight. Many clinicians and researchers supported her calls for a 'monitoring body' to scrutinise in vitro fertilisation and embryo research. The growth of bioethics in British universities occurred in the 1980s and 1990s with the emergence of dedicated centres for bioethics. The book details how some senior doctors and bioethicists led calls for a politically-funded national bioethics committee during the 1980s. It details how recent debates on assisted dying highlight the authority and influence of British bioethicists.
Natasha Feiner is a Policy Officer at the British Heart Foundation. Prior to this post, Dr Feiner completed a PhD at the University of Exeter. Her doctoral dissertation (2018) examined fatigue and the politics of work in post-war Britain, particularly in the context of civil aviation.
Jane Hand is a Research Fellow for the Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator Award ‘The Cultural History of the NHS’, at the Centre for the History of Medicine, University of Warwick. Prior to this post, Dr Hand completed her PhD at the University of Warwick in 2014, titled ‘Visualising Food as Modern Medicine: Gender, the Body, and Health Education in England, c.1940–1990’.
Vanessa Heggie is a Lecturer in the History of Medicine and Science at the University of Birmingham. Along with her work with the Guardian, she is author of Higher and Colder: A History of Extreme Physiology and Exploration (University of Chicago Press, 2019) and A History of British Sports Medicine (Manchester University Press, 2011). Dr Heggie has also published widely in Isis (2014), British Journal of the History of Science (2013), Women’s History Review (2011), Medical History (2010) and Social History of Medicine (2010).
Mark Jackson is Professor of the History of Medicine and Director of the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health at the University of Exeter. He is the author of numerous monographs, including New-Born Child Murder (Manchester University Press, 1996), Allergy: The History of Modern Medicine (Reaktion, 2006), The Age of Stress: Science and the Search for Stability (Oxford University Press, 2013) and The History of Medicine: A Beginner's Guide (Oneworld, 2014). He has also edited a number of volumes, including The Oxford Handbook of the History of Medicine (Oxford University Press, 2011), Stress in Post-War Britain, 1945–85 (Routledge, 2015) and The Routledge History of Disease (Routledge, 2016). His study of the history of the midlife crisis will be published by Reaktion in 2020.
Nicos Kefalas received his PhD in the History of Medicine from the University of Exeter in 2019 for his thesis ‘Healthmania: Diet, Supplements and The Pursuit of Health in America and Britain, c.1945–80’. His research interests revolve around the history of healthy eating, gender and dietary practices, and the history of supplements in popular culture.
Chris Millard is Lecturer in the History of Medicine and Medical Humanities at the University of Sheffield. He is the author of A History of Self-Harm in Britain: A Genealogy of Cutting and Overdosing (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), has another monograph – Munchausen Syndrome: Illness and Deception in the Modern World – under contract with Polity Press and has published in a wide range of academic journals, including Medical History (2015), the British Medical Journal (2014) and History of the Human Sciences (2013).
Alex Mold is Associate Professor in History at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, where she is also currently the Director of the Centre for History in Public Health. Dr Mold is the author of Making the Patient Consumer: Patient Organisations and Health Consumerism in Britain (Manchester University Press, 2015) and Heroin: The Treatment of Addiction in Twentieth-Century Britain (Northern Illinois University Press, 2008), and co-editor (with Virginia Berridge) of Voluntary Action and Illegal Drugs: Health and Society in Britain since the 1960s (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010) and (with Virginia Berridge and Martin Gorsky) of Public Health in History (Open University Press, 2011).
Martin D. Moore is a Research Fellow in the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health at the University of Exeter. He is the author of Managing Diabetes, Managing Medicine (Manchester University Press, 2019) and has publications in Social History of Medicine (2015), The Routledge History of Disease (Routledge, 2016) and Journal for the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences (2018).
Ayesha Nathoo recently completed a Wellcome Trust Research Fellowship in the Centre for Medical History, University of Exeter. She has previously held research fellowships at Clare Hall, University of Cambridge, and the Science Museum, London, and was a collaborator with the Hubbub group, the first residents of the Hub at Wellcome Collection, London (2014–16). She is the author of Hearts Exposed: Transplants and the Media in 1960s Britain (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), and has published numerous articles and chapters, most recently in the Oxford Handbook of Meditation (Oxford University Press, 2019).
Dorothy Porter is Professor in the History of Health Sciences at the University of California, San Francisco. Professor Porter is the author of numerous monographs, including Health Citizenship: Essays on Social Medicine and Bio-medical Politics (University of California Press, 2012) and Health, Civilisation and the State: A History of Public Health from Ancient to Modern Times (Routledge, 2nd edition, 2005). Professor Porter has also edited The History of Health and the Modern State (Rodopi, 2nd edition, 2006), and (with Galen Joseph) Health Rights at the Crossroads: Women, New Science and Institutional Violence (Special Edition, Western Humanities Review, 66:3, 2012).