Voluntary Euthanasia and the Common Law

Paperback | August 1, 2000

byMargaret Otlowski

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Margaret Otlowski tackles the complex and controversial issue of active voluntary euthanasia and argues convincingly for a reform of the criminal law prohibition in common law jurisdictions. Otlowski critically examines the strict legal situation on euthanasia, which treats medically assisteddying as murder, and contrasts it with the position in practice. By highlighting the leniency shown to the few doctors who have actually been prosecuted for assisting their patients to die, she points to the discrepancy between the law and medical practice and argues for reform. The many argumentsraised in the euthanasia debate are considered, as are steps taken towards reform in the UK, USA, Canada, and the Netherlands (where active euthanasia in now openly practised).

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Margaret Otlowski tackles the complex and controversial issue of active voluntary euthanasia and argues convincingly for a reform of the criminal law prohibition in common law jurisdictions. Otlowski critically examines the strict legal situation on euthanasia, which treats medically assisteddying as murder, and contrasts it with the p...

Dr Margaret Otlowski is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Commerce and Law, University of Tasmania. She has acted as a consultant for various government working parties on issues relating to the ethics of health care. She has filled the position of Chair for the Tasmania Ethics Committee (Human Experimentation) since 1993.
Format:PaperbackPublished:August 1, 2000Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198298684

ISBN - 13:9780198298687

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Table of Contents

IntroductionPrefaceEuthanasia Under the Criminal LawSuicide and Assisted SuicideThe Position in Practice: Doctors' Practices and the Law AppliedThe Euthanasia DebateThe Changing Climate For ReformMoves Towards ReformThe NetherlandsOptions for ReformAppendix: Rights of the Terminally Ill Act 1996BibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

`Otlowski's command and manipulation of her sources, from the common law to the moral plane, across the deserts of causation and intention, and through the swamps of public policy, are a delight to read ... Otlowski's clear and consistent argument is that non-legalized, active voluntaryeuthanasia does more harm than would its legalized cousin. Her style is elegant, yet thoughtful and judicious. This book is a remarkable achievement; an invaluable contribution to an old debate where too frequently fiction takes the place of fact, where fable does the work of narrative, and wheredemons and panics abound and the stylistically straightforward is surrendered to the sesquipedalian. Into such a fabulous world the refreshing breeze of measured argument and analysis is always a welcome visitor, whether you like the nature of their calling card or not.'Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law 22 (1) 2000