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The Girl in His Shadow


The story of one woman who believed in scientific medicine before the world ...
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Dr. Croft often resorts to disreputable methods to get subjects. For him, the ends justify the means. Do you agree with him? To what extent?

Created: 04/30/21

Replies: 14

Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 2732

Dr. Croft often resorts to disreputable methods to get subjects. For him, the ends justify the means. Do you agree with him? To what extent?

Dr. Croft often resorts to disreputable methods to get subjects, such as paying grave robbers or taking advantage of grieving family members. For him, the ends justify the means. Do you agree with him? To what extent?


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
dianac

Join Date: 04/02/13

Posts: 66

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

There is still that mentality of the ends justifying the means when it comes to medical care and cures for many illnesses. I don't agree with that notion 100% but then I am not in the medical field so I reserve judgement.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melissa c.

Join Date: 01/10/21

Posts: 62

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

Advances in science and medicine often depend on research and testing of vulnerable subjects. While I don't like this, and often find myself upset and opposed to some of the testing, I also see how these methods can provide valuable information and data in finding cures for diseases and surgical breakthroughs.

It's a very delicate balance.


Posted Apr. 30, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
PKH

Join Date: 01/29/21

Posts: 38

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

I don't necessarily agree with what he did but I do understand his reasons. He was a dedicated medical scientist and didn't want anything to stand in his way. While we may not like some of the methods used, this is how researchers advance their theories.


Posted May. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
vivianh

Join Date: 11/14/11

Posts: 111

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

That’s a difficult topic. Grave robbing to procure bodies to conduct medical experiments was quite common during this time period. I do believe Dr. Croft believed that he was advancing science. So many people died from infection, quackery, misguided treatments that worsened illnesses. Sometimes trying an experimental treatment is the only option. The US federal government has performed more heinous secret medical experiments than Dr. Croft ever considered. I do think of the Hippocratic Oath...first do no harm. But consider 2020 &=the COVID vaccine....somebody had to agree to be test subjects. In the 21st Century, people agree to participate in clinical trials...often out of desperation, not fully appreciating the risks. Sometimes...there is justification.


Posted May. 01, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
carriem

Join Date: 10/19/20

Posts: 60

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

Though I do not agree with his methods these were not ordinary times with the cholera epidemic and the need to understand the causes, and effects on human Dr. Croft made the right decision to study corpses and achieved scientific results that could be helpful in the future. Plus his tests and research on vulnerable people at first I disagreed with but saw the results and benefits later in the book.


Posted May. 02, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
paulak

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 209

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

Dr. Croft seems so singularly focused on whatever problem he is addressing at the time, oblivious to things that would give pause to regular people. Perhaps this type of focus is needed to make great leaps in knowledge. I found his character fascinating.


Posted May. 02, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
barbarao

Join Date: 10/18/12

Posts: 24

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

It’s difficult to judge today how medical advances and discoveries were made. Human life was dispensable, cheap and the poor, in particular were the most vulnerable. All the greatest advances in science and medicine, in particular, were made by people driven by their curiosity and the need to learn. fortunately, respect for humans also evolved over time and patient’s rights and medical ethics eventually evolving albeit much too slow.


Posted May. 02, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
katherinep

Join Date: 07/16/14

Posts: 313

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

He was just like any doctor of the time--the only cadavers available were either those dug up--grave robbing--or those of people who died in the poorhouse or on the street with no one to claim the bodies. No one was donating their bodies for science. Animal dissection only goes so far in understanding the human body. I used cats in my A&P classes--they are pretty close. Fetal pigs were used but I didn't use them because body parts were not developed enough


Posted May. 05, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
AmberH

Join Date: 05/09/18

Posts: 62

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

I agree with Dr Croft to an extent. We have standards in place for a reason, but there are certainly times when going outside of the standard helps make progress. For example, Nora learning medical techniques likely helped pave the way for other women.


Posted May. 05, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
deeh

Join Date: 03/03/12

Posts: 210

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

While grave-robbing led to monsters such as Burke and Hare, who committed murder in order to provide researchers with fresh bodies, it was the only means available at the time. I do not condone it, but medical advances using stolen bodies are what led to our modern understanding of how the body works. As to research on living persons, the word "volunteer" is the key. Experiments on unwitting subjects cannot be okay, ever.


Posted May. 05, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Janet Smith

Join Date: 07/28/14

Posts: 44

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

I had a great deal of respect from Dr. Croft. Yes, at times his methods were unconventional but he was extremely intelligent and knew his stuff. Nora learned a lot from him.


Posted May. 06, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
MarieA

Join Date: 10/12/11

Posts: 256

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

Dr. Croft's methods were done in the name of science and medicine.


Posted May. 11, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
beckys

Join Date: 08/12/16

Posts: 125

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

Wow, this is hard to judge from our perspective in the 21st century. These were truly different times and although the means were not always respectable, I sure am happy that advances were made in medicine that has gotten us where we are now. I am always thoughtful about what advances will be made in our future and how looking back on our treatments that are being done today , will possibly look barbaric to those in the future.


Posted Jun. 14, 2021 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
bill

Join Date: 05/25/17

Posts: 23

RE: Dr. Croft often resorts to ...

It was probably necessary at the time but it was most upsetting when Dr. Croft made the arrangements to dig up the body of a young female patient of his because he knew that her parents would not have agreed.


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