September 25, 2022

Edinburgh to host bioethics film festival

The 10th International Biomedical Ethics Film Festival will deal with the moral status of the human embryo.

Is the human embryo just a pile of cells or is it a human person like us? What are the ethical consequences of each position for society? Will a consensus ever be found? But what is a person anyway?

These are some of the questions which film-goers will be invited to explore and debate at the 10th International Biomedical Ethics Film Festival on the moral status of the human embryo in November in Edinburgh.

The Festival will feature a range of films and documentaries. If the Walls Could Talk (1996) is a revealing trilogy of stories about unexpected pregnancies set in the same house, but with different occupants spanning over 40 years. In the teenage classic Juno (2007) an adolescent discovers she is pregnant after a one-off event with her best friend. (See trailer below.)

Following each screening there will be a discussion with an expert panel including Dr Trevor Stammers, of St Mary’s University, in London, and Professor Gerard Magill of, Duquesne University, in Pittsburgh (US).

The co-ordinator, Dr Calum MacKellar, director of research for the Scottish Council on Human Bioethics, comments:

“Questions around the moral status of human embryos and foetuses have always been important to society including filmmakers. The films screened during the festival will raise important questions about the degree to which embryos should be considered, from a moral perspective, and the ethical implications that result from this.”

For more information contact the Scottish Council on Human Bioethics at mail@schb.org.uk.  

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