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Why Rights? Where Rights Come From and What They Mean for Healthcare

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Harvard Medical School

TMEC Room 209 (260 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115)

12:30 pm

A lecture by Fr. Thomas Joseph White, OP (The Thomistic Institute)

Lunch will be served

Co-sponsored by CMDA (the Christian Medical and Dental Association) and CSO (Catholic Students Organization)]

Free and open to the public

Lecture Description:

The concept of rights is used very often in modern discourse (rights to healthcare, rights to housing, rights to fair trial, right to vote, etc., etc.).  Yet seldom is it discussed where these rights come from and how should we decide what really is a human right. Is it just decided by popular opinion/vote? What if these rights conflict with other things? Are there real philosophical underpinnings for how we can make these decisions? 

Speaker Bio:

Fr. Thomas Joseph White, OP, is the Director of the Thomistic Institute at the Dominican House of Studies, Washington DC. Originally a native of southeastern Georgia, Fr. White studied at Brown University, where he converted to Catholicism. He did his doctoral studies at Oxford University, and is the author of The Light of Christ: An Introduction to Catholicism (The Catholic University of America Press), Wisdom in the Face of Modernity: A Thomistic Study in Natural Theology (Sapientia Press, 2009, second edition 2016), The Incarnate Lord: A Thomistic Study in Christology (The Catholic University of America Press, 2015) and Exodus (Brazos Press, 2016). He is co-editor of the academic journal Nova et Vetera and in 2011 was appointed an ordinary member of the Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas Aquinas.