Human remains are reminders of our own mortality, as well as the physical remnants of family, friends, adversaries and strangers. In contemporary society and in many different cultures, showing any disrespect for human remains is taboo; but is this only for remains belonging to ‘insiders’ from the same religion, culture, tribe or community? Are those labelled ‘outsiders’ treated differently? At what point does a human body, or body part, become a 'thing' rather than a person? And once this happens, what are the ethical implications of what we do with it?
See the object
Speaker: Marek Kohn, author and journalist
This event was recorded live at Wellcome Collection on 23 January 2013.