History of Bioethics in Brazil: Pioneering Voices, Educational Programs and Future Perspectives
de Barchifontaine, Christian de Paul
Journal International de Bioéthique = International Journal of Bioethics 2008 March-June; 19(1-2): 21-41
Although Brazilian bioethics has appeared in a globalized and dynamic context in which the main problems on the current agenda of bioethical questions had already been formulated (e. g., abortion, euthanasia, organ transplants, etc.), it contributed to the bioethics questions agenda by bringing in specific and original problems, linked to the socio-economic-political and cultural reality of Latin America countries and especially the Brazilian one, for instance, public health problems and the accompanying challenges stemming from unjust situations and social exclusion. Historically, first there was a dependence on a foreign ethical model, the North-American principialist bioethical paradigm, almost hegemonic in the first 25 years of world bioethics history. This would be Brazilian bioethics "infancy", the 1990s stage. There follows a movement with a critical attitude about "imported" models, particularly the principialist model, when it comes to public health. We enter here into the "adolescence" of Brazilian bioethics. As we arrive at "the adult" phase, we begin to make a deep evaluation, where the main challenge to face will be complex, involving knowing how to distinguish without severing, and to unite without confounding, bioethical problems of a personal character and those of a public one, that is, knowing how to distinguish among relevance types and scopes of some problems to be faced, in order for us to integrate them in a domain marked by a greater understanding.
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