Ethics' Anatomy

Film Series II - Continuation

A Film Series initiated by the Department of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine in cooperation with the University Medical Center Göttingen and the cinema Lumière

Funding: University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG)

Duration: seit 2015

Carried out by:

  • Dr. Solveig Lena Hansen
  • Dr. phil. Sabine Wöhlke

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‘Anatomy' is what we call the structure of the human body. Even if only few medical techniques directly intervene in this anatomy, all of them concern the human body. The field of bioethics deals with the evaluation of interventions into the body and their consequences. In doing so, it focuses on various standards that are often difficult to reconcile: individual self-determination, but also professional ethics of physicians and social opportunities and risks. Here, bioethical conflicts about how to deal with the human body also have their own 'moral anatomy' in that the pros and cons of an intervention are carefully weighed up. However, these interventions are not discussed exclusively in science, but also in the family, in self-help groups and in the media.

The film series “Ethics' Anatomy” deals with these different forms of discussion and the "moral anatomy" of biotechnologies. The feature films and documentaries shown offer a point of entry into the discussion of bioethical questions that ultimately concern us all. They are intended to open up bioethics to a social dialogue involving citizens, affected persons and patients.

The film series is a continuation of the film series “Complex Conflicts - Bioethics in Film and Public Discourse”, which was carried out in 2012/2013 and awarded the Prize of the University of Göttingen Foundation Board (“Preis des Stiftungsrates der Universität Göttingen”) in 2013.

For both series, the films chosen for discussion were ones with topics not only of concern to theoretical science, but such that specifically relate to the people's everyday lives.


Wöhlke, S.; Wolff, E. (2016): Real Humans –Echte Menschen? Ein interdisziplinäres Gespräch über Roboter, Pflege und Film. Mabuse, 224, 41, S. 34-38

Hansen, S.L.; Wöhlke, S. (2016): Contrasting Medical Technology with Deprivation and Social Vulnerability. Lessons for the Ethical Debate on Cloning and Organ Transplantation through the Film Never Let Me Go (2010). Nanoethics 10, 3, 245–256.

Wöhlke, S., Hansen, S.L., Schicktanz, S.: Themenheft der Zeitschrift Ethik in der Medizin (1/2015): Bioethik im Film. Potentiale, Methoden, Anwendungsfelder. This issue includes:

Solveig Lena Hansen; Sabine Wöhlke (2014): Movies, ready for an ethical debate? Die Göttinger Filmreihe “Komplexe Konflikte” als Diskurs über medizinethische Themen. In: Soziale Technik, 1, S. 5-7.

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