Law & Neuroscience Seminar

This semester, the philosophy department is running a seminar on law and neuroscience, led by Dr. Fritz Allhoff.  Anyone is welcome to participate!  Check out the syllabus or course description:

Recent developments in neuroscience portend a range of interesting questions for the law. Most fundamentally, neuroscience challenges traditional doctrines of moral and legal responsibility. Concepts like competence and addiction are cast in new lights, as are developmental axes, like the adolescent brain. Free will and determinism loom large here, and legal doctrines need to respond to a new empirical scene. Mind reading and lie detection move from the realm of the science fiction into, maybe, the realm of the possible. But hazards loom large as neuroscientific information is often misunderstood, or even faces barriers in terms of evidentiary admissibility. In the future, brain-machine interfaces and artificial intelligence may revolutionize what it even means to be human. This seminar offers an introduction into a wide array of topics; it draws from academic scholarship, as well as the limited—but growing—case law.

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Brains 101

Prof. Lisa Baker (WMU Psychology) is going to give a lecture explaining the basics of brain anatomy and brain scans; this should be of interest to those with humanistic interests relating to neuroscience, but will be presented at a non-technical level.

Monday, January 11, 2:30-4:00 in Moore 3014.

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1st Annual Undergraduate Biomedical Ethics Symposium A Success

On Saturday, May 5, 2012 WMU Medical Humanities Workgroup hosted the First Annual Undergraduate Biomedical Ethics Symposium. The symposium featured nine insghtful and well-researched papers on a wide variety of ethical issues in medicine and healthcare by outstanding undergraduates from around the country and from Saudi Arabia. The following Colleges and Universities were represented – Western Michigan University, Loyola University-Chicago, Loyola University-New Orleans, Hendrix College, Purdue University, Oregon State University and Alfaisal University in Saudi Arabia. Each student researcher did a remarkable job presenting their research and fielding questions from the audience. 20 people attended and supported these remarkable undergraduates.

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Undergraduate Biomedical Ethics Symposium (May 5, 2012)

The WMU First Annual Undergraduate Biomedical Ethics Symposium is Saturday, May 5, 2012. The symposium schedule can be viewed here. We are looking forward to a great day of interacting with undergraduates from around the world on the complex issues facing healthcare in the 21st century. The symposium will be held in The University Center for the Humanities, 2500 Knauss Hall. Registration is at 8:30 AM and, after a brief welcome, the first paper will be presented at 9:05 AM. Please come out and support the research that has been done by these exceptional undergraduates!

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Sanford Lecture (POSTPONED)

The lecture scheduled for June 20, 2012 has been POSTPONED.  Andy Sanford  a WMU Philosophy Graduate Student and Program Coordinator for the Medical Humanities Workgroup will be reschedule the lecture for a later date. The lecture ”Right Thinking and Mental Health: An Inquiry into Philosophical Counseling.” This lecture will explore a relatively new practice in applied philosophy called philosophical counseling which attempts to help people analyze their thought patterns in an attempt to improve their mental health.

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2nd Annual Medical Humanities Conference

We are pleased to announce that Western Michigan University will be hosting the Second Annual Medical Humanities Conference on September 27-28, 2012 at the Fetzer Center on Western Michigan University’s Campus. Last years conference drew participants from around the world and we anticipate that this years event will be even better. Mark your calendars now and plan to attend. Registration details are available here. The Deadline for submissions is July 15, 2012 and the Call for Abstracts is available here.

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Cowling Lecture (Postponed)

Due to some unforeseen scheduling conflicts Dr. Cowling’s Monday, April 23rd, 2012 has been postponed.  At some future date over the summer we hope to reschedule this lecture. Dr. Sam Cowling will be giving an exciting lecture on the ethics of forced sterilization entitled “Sterilization, Parenthood, and Reproductive Capacities.” Sam Cowling is a Visiting Asst. Professor in WMU’s Philosophy Department.

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Art Caplan Lectures (February 23, 2012)

Art Caplan, Professor of Biomedical Ethics at the University of Pennsylvania, will be here on Thursday, February 23, 2012. His first Lecture at Noon in the Small Auditorium at the Fetzer Center will be about the controversy surrounding the HPV vaccination. And his second lecture will be at 4 pm at 2008 Richmond Center where he will be discussing the rationing of Healthcare. The link with all the information can be found by clicking here

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Westerman Lecture (April 4)

On Wednesday, April 4, 2012 in the Philosophy Department Conference Room, Moore Hall 3014. Dr. Perry Westerman will be giving a lecture titled “Paternalism and Relative Truth: The Dilemma of Dementia”. This Lecture promises to be an interesting exploration of the physicians moral responsibility to the dementia patient.

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Undergraduate Bioethics Research Symposium

WMU Medical Humanities Workgroup is pleased to announce that we will be hosting an Undergraduate Bioethics Research Conference on Saturday May 5, 2012 in the WMU University Center for the Humanities, 2500 Knauss Hall. The Call for Papers is available here. This event takes place between semesters but we encourage students to attend, particularly those who intend to work in the healthcare industry.

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