Saint Louis University

Trotter Book

Untitled Document

April 8, 2008
Bander Center Inauguration
Keynote Speaker:
Matthew Wynia, MD, MPH
Director, Institute of Ethics,
American Medical Association  
3:30-6:00 PM
LRC Auditorium, Medical Center Campus

Center Faculty Member Griffin Trotter Releases New Book

Griffin Trotter started writing about disaster ethics after wrestling with the significance of the events surrounding September 11, 2001, but was surprised when he was approached by The Johns Hopkins University Press to write a book on the subject. The result, The Ethics of Coercion in Mass Casualty Medicine, explores the balance between individual liberties and the legitimate need for reaction to disaster, both natural and man-made.

While sure to be the source of some controversy for its libertarian stance in a field that often looks to other ideologies for justification, the book is useful precisely for that reason. As Ron Hamel noted, “Some will agree with the author's positions; others will not. But all will be challenged by this book. Clearly written, well-argued, and carefully researched and documented, it should cause every reader to reexamine his or her own assumptions and practices.”

Trotter also sees this as a boon; “The feedback I’ve gotten back from colleagues at other institutions has been great,” he says. “That they’re already using the book as a text in their classes is very encouraging.

“I’ve also heard from people who have used the book in their work in advising hospitals on disaster preparedness—one of the best things for me is how people from all along the political spectrum and both in the private sector and academia have found it useful for their work.”

With favorable reviews from the Journal of the American Medical Association, Trotter’s newest work will not only fill its niche, but as James Childress noted in his review—“it offers important suggestions for a broader framework of public health ethics. This clear, thoughtful, and well-argued book merits wide attention." 

Higher purpose. Greater good.
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