Echo Calling Narcissus: What Exceeds the Gaze of Clinical Ethics Consultation?

ArticleinHEC Forum 22(1):73-84 · March 2010
DOI: 10.1007/s10730-010-9123-8 · Source: PubMed


    Guiding our response in this essay is our view that current efforts to demarcate the role of the clinical ethicist risk reducing its complex network of authorizations to sites of power and payment. In turn, the role becomes susceptible to various ideologies-individualisms, proceduralisms, secularisms-that further divide the body from the web of significances that matter to that body, where only she, the patient, is located. The security of policy, standards, and employment will pull against and eventually sever the authorization secured by authentic moral inquiry. Instead of asking "What do I need to know?", the question animating the drive to standardize will be "What is the policy or standard?" The claims of the authors in this issue of HEC Forum confirm these suspicions.