Organ Donation and Transplantation: Body Organs as An Exchangeable Socio-Cultural Resource

Synopsis

From a background in ethnography, Israeli teacher Ben-David aims to understand the meaning of organ donation and transplantation from the perspectives of the three major partners involved: donors, recipients, and the medical teams. The participation of all partners, each with specific interests, enables human organs to become an exchangeable commodity with social significance.

Applying the resulting information from her comprehensive study, Ben-David assesses the roles played by life and death in organ donation within the Israeli Jewish community. She also examines issues of social legitimacy connected to organ donation in the Israeli society, institutionalization of transplantations, and transplantation as a trigger for transformation to hero status.

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