Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Death a New Form of Entertainment?

I'm currently listening to a story on NPR's Talk of the Nation about cadaver exhibits. (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5651882) I wasn't planning on blogging about this, indeed I was unaware of such things, but now I feel compelled to.

Apparently there are exhibits, some in the United States, where cadavers, dead bodies, are put on display. For example, Body Worlds. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_Worlds)They're preserved and put in various poses, from what I can gather. For example, they may be riding a horse, etc. I believe I heard the word whimsical be used to describe this exhibit of dead human beings. They said the mood at these ranged from sober to circus like. There are even fetuses and children on display.

Displaying people who were once alive is just wrong. One of the callers was asked if they thought of them as human beings. They of course said no, they thought of them as works of art. You should not be making works of art out of dead people, that's just wrong. How disrespectful. A few years ago, the only place you would see this is in the basement of a psychopath murderer. This should be in Silence of the Lambs and not a museum.

To heap onto what I would say is wrong anyways are concerns over informed consent of those who bodies are on display. Some of the bodies may come from prison inmates and hospital patients from Kyrgystan and executed prisoners from China. Furthermore, how can children who God forbid (and I mean God forbid) shouldn't even be going to such exhibits or fetuses give informed consent to have there dead bodies on display?

Apparently, the original exhibit displayed bodies more like one would find in an anatomical lab. But, visitors didn't really like that, they thought they looked like ghosts. Hence the need to put them in whimsical poses, make them more abstract, and remove the humanity from them. I would say they are dead men and women and one shouldn't feel cheerful looking at them.

Why not, while we're at it, we have exhibits of people dying? We could have reality TV shows where people kill each other. The reality TV shows we have now are getting kind of old. Instead voting someone of the island, kill them of the island. Why not just bring back the gladiator games from ancient Rome? Watching people die is so much better in person. We could have ESPNDeath. Of course, Rome also collapsed, which could hapopen to us if we let our culture degenerate like they did.


Anonymous Jason loves butter said...

What if the people give permission for doing such things? Like people who donate their bodies to science? This time it's just they're donating their bodies to "art". I understand your point, but think if the body owner (the person whose body is being used) gave permission prior to death (or maybe even post mortem?) they there's nothing wrong with what they are doing. Though it does show the continual downward spiral we are in- If this were years ago, the people involved would be consider sickos or some other nice big word that you probably can think up but I can't...

PS: I'm having a lot of troulbe deciphering the letters that allow me to post... it has an "r" and an "n" next to each other, which looks like an "m"- "rn"

Thu Aug 17, 07:09:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Gregarious said...

You don't have the right to give your body away for whatever use. If you did, you could sell yourself. You can't. It does show the downward spiral we are in.

Fri Aug 18, 11:51:00 PM EDT  

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