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Event: Author Program: Scott Shershow on Right-to-Die Debate, 2/20/2014

Event: Author Program: Scott Shershow on Right-to-Die Debate
Speaker: Scott Shershow, professor, Department of Engflish

A presentation on his new book, "Deconstructing Dignity: A Critique of the Right-to-Die Debate," followed by a question-and-answer session and book signing.

The right-to-die debate has gone on for centuries, playing out most recently in the case of a 13-year-old girl declared brain-dead in the aftermath of a routine surgical procedure. In "Deconstructing Dignity," Shershow offers a powerful new way of thinking about it philosophically.

Focusing on the concepts of human dignity and the sanctity of life, he employs Derridean deconstruction to uncover self-contradictory and damaging assumptions that underlie both sides of the debate. Shershow reveals how arguments both supporting and denying the right to die undermine their own unconditional concepts of human dignity and the sanctity of life with a hidden conditional logic, one often tied to practical economic concerns and the scarcity or unequal distribution of medical resources.

He goes on to examine the exceptional case of self-sacrifice, closing with a vision of a society -- one whose conditions we are far from meeting -- in which the debate can finally be resolved.

Shershow is the author of "Puppets and 'Popular' Culture" and "Laughing Matters: The Paradox of Comedy." He is the coeditor of "Marxist Shakespeares."

Starting date: 2/20/2014      Ending date:   2/20/2014
Starting time: 12:00 PM      Ending time:   1:00 PM
Event type: Presentation
Location: Lounge, main bookstore, Memorial Union
Sponsored by: UC Davis Stores
Cost: Free

Contact if questions about this event:

Contact name: Paul Takushi
Contact e-mail: pmtakushi@ucdavis.edu
Contact phone: (530) 752-9072