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December 4, 1996

Organ Transplantation: Meanings and Realities

Author Affiliations

Londonderry, Vt

JAMA. 1996;276(21):1761. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03540210067038

Renée C. Fox has been called out of a self-imposed retirement from a lifetime in research of the sociology, ethics, and morality of end-stage diseases and their treatment by transplantation. She elected to lead a distinguished panel of scholars in one final research project on death, dying, the prolongation of life by technology, and the "clinical or sociological practices of transplantation in the modern hospital." Organ Transplantation grew out of that project, which was sponsored by the Park Ridge Center for the Study of Health, Faith and Ethics in Chicago, Ill. The subject matter is in many ways a counterpart or follow-up to Fox and Judith Swazey's Spare Parts: Organ Replacement in American Society, in which Fox explained her reasons to abandon the field. The Organ Transplantation group delved into the multicultural ethnic, mystical, mythological, and spiritual concepts of life, death, and reincarnation of the body across a broad spectrum