In a new preface, Harris offers a glimpse at the new science and technology to come, equipping readers with the knowledge to assess the ethics and policy dimensions of future forms of human enhancement.
Legal texts have been with us since the dawn of human history. Beginning in 1953, life too became textual. The discovery of the structure of DNA made it possible to represent the basic matter of life with permutations and combinations of four letters of the alphabet, A, T, C, and G. Since then, the biological and legal conceptions of life have been in constant, mutually constitutive interplay—the former focusing on life's definition, the latter on life's entitlements. Reframing Rights argues that this period of transformative change in law and the life sciences should be considered “bioconstitutional.”
Reframing Rights explores the evolving relationship of biology, biotechnology, and law through a series of national and cross-national case studies. Sheila Jasanoff maps out the conceptual territory in a substantive editorial introduction, after which the contributors offer “snapshots” of developments at the frontiers of biotechnology and the law. Chapters examine such topics as national cloning and xenotransplant policies; the politics of stem cell research in Britain, Germany, and Italy; DNA profiling and DNA databases in criminal law; clinical trials in India and the United States; the GM crop controversy in Britain; and precautionary policymaking in the European Union. These cases demonstrate changes of constitutional significance in the relations among human bodies, selves, science, and the state.
This transdisciplinary collection includes perspectives from the disciplines of philosophy, cultural theory, art and literary theory, history and theory of science, environmental studies, law, landscape architecture, history, and geography. Included authors span three continents and four countries.
Included essays contribute significantly to a growing scholarship surrounding "the question of the animal" emanating from philosophical, cultural and activist discourses. Its authors’ are at the forefront of the growing number of theorists and practioners across the disciplines concerned with the impact of new technologies on the more-than-human world.