Last updated on: 3/5/2009 | Author:

Daniel Callahan, PhD Biography

Senior Research Scholar and President Emeritus at the Hastings Center
Con to the question "Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal?"

“This path to peaceful dying rests on the illusion that a society can safely put in the hands of physicians the power directly and deliberately to take life, euthanasia, or to assist patients in taking their own life, physician-assisted suicide… It threatens to add still another sad chapter to an already sorry human history of giving one person the liberty to take the life of another. It perpetuates and pushes to an extreme the very ideology of control–the goal of mastering life and death–that created the problems of modern medicine in the first place. Instead of changing the medicine that generates the problem of an intolerable death (which, in almost all cases, good palliative medicine could do), allowing physicians to kill or provide the means to take one’s own life simply treats the symptoms, all the while reinforcing, and driving us more deeply into, an ideology of control.”

The Case Against Assisted Suicide: For the Right to End-of-Life Care, 2004

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Senior Research Scholar and President Emeritus, Hastings Center
  • Former Director of International Programs, Hastings Center
  • Fellow, Institution for Social and Policy Studies, Yale University, 2004-Present
  • Senior Research Fellow, Department of Philosophy, Yale University, 2004-Present
  • Senior Lecturer, Harvard Medical School, 1998-Present
  • Doctor of Humane Letters (Honorary), Oregon State University, 1997
  • Visiting Fellow, Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies, 1996
  • President and Co-Founder, The Hastings Center, 1969-1996
  • Executive Committee, Association for Practical and Professional Ethics, 1990-1996
  • Honorary Professor, Charles University Medical School, Prague, Czech Republic, 1996
  • Advisory Committee on Scientific Integrity, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1991-1992
  • Consultant, Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences, 1992-1998
  • Advisory Editor, Ethics in Science and Medicine, 1975-Present
  • Editorial Advisory Board, Advanced Studies in Professional Ethics, 1986-Present
  • Advisory Board, Medical Humanities Review, 1986-Present
  • Board of Editors, Journal of Medicine, Ethics and Law, 1987-Present
  • PhD, Philosophy, Harvard University, 1965
  • MA, Philosophy, Georgetown University, 1957
  • BA, English and Psychology, Yale University, 1952
  • None found
Quoted in:
  1. Should Healthcare Resources Be Subject to Rationing?
  2. Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal?
  3. Would Legalizing Physician-Assisted Suicide or Voluntary Euthanasia Create a Slippery Slope to Non-Voluntary or Involuntary Euthanasia?