Archive for the ‘Week4_HumanBodyandMedicine’ Category

Week 4_HumanBody and Medicine, Chemical Engineering Hippocratic Oath by Crystal Lin

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

My major is Chemical Engineering, which is a very broad field in engineering, also known as the “universal engineer.” This is my view on what an Oath for Chemical Engineers should be like, taken in part from the Hippocratic Oath for Scientists, Engineers, and Executives.

I swear to fulfill, to the best of my ability and judgement, this covenant:

To study intently and maintain an extensive background knowledge in chemistry, the physical sciences, mathematics, general engineering and chemical engineering.

To conduct myself with good moral character in any and all performances involving my chemical engineering skills.

To use good moral judgement when creating and administering new and current chemicals.

To use these chemicals to create new materials for the benefit and improvement of society

To apply my chemical engineering skills with complete respect for the well being of all human beings and all other creatures on this earth.

To not allow considerations of nationality, politics, prejudice, or material or monetary advancement get in the way of my duties

I make this Oath solemnly, freely, and upon my honor.

Wk 4_Hypocratic Oath by Alana Chin

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

This week in lecture we talked about art in medicine and how medicine has evolved over time. At first, you wouldn’t think that art and medicine were related at all. However, medicine is primarily responsible for our ability to represent the human body. Years before the Renaissance, artists didn’t have a complete understanding as to what the human body really looked like. It was illegal at the time to dissect bodies and what they could see on the outside wasn’t enough to create an accurate representation. One doesn’t normally think about this but now it makes a lot of sense. One needs to know the simple things like body proportions, to more complex things like how muscles contract or relax and how that is visible during movement in order to realistically replicate the human body. And through medicine and dissections, artists were finally able to analyze and study the human body. With this breakthrough, medicine and art took off quickly and made huge impacts on society. As more and more people began to study and practice medicine, it became necessary that all physicians follow a standardized code of conduct and in 400 B.C.E, Hippocrates wrote “The Oath” for all medical practitioners to abide. It is interesting to read this oath today because there are many elements that wouldn’t be accepted in today’s society. The Oath is still necessary because it discusses patient confidentiality and devotion to the patient health without ulterior motives. It also talks about showing respect for patient’s homes during consultations and teaching pupils and apprentices about medicine. However, there are a few very controversial topics that would not go unnoticed in society today. The Oath specifically prohibits doctors from aiding in abortion or euthanasia, the act of painlessly putting someone to death if they are suffering from an incurable disease or condition. Although these two are still up for much debate today, there are still many situations where these treatments would be desirable for some. It is hard to imagine that euthanasia would be completely illegal, especially if a patient is suffering from a painful disease or terminal cancer. This issue of abortion is also a big can of worms as it deals with the freedom of choice and the definition of life.

With these two major topics in consideration, it is appropriate that this oath is revised to fit today’s society. The modern version of the Hypocratic Oath still discusses the topics of confidentiality and sets general guidelines for being a compassionate doctor. However, in the modern version, abortion and euthanasia are not mentioned. In fact, no specific medical procedures are banned in the new oath. Instead, there is more emphasis on the role and character of the doctor. This one dictates that the doctors should have warmth, sympathy, and understanding of their patients. It also warns the doctors against having too much pride and “playing God” or refusing to ask others for help or admitting that they do not know something. But most interestingly, the new oath ends with words of good luck and good fortune. It almost feels canned and overly optimistic. I feel that this closing is too forced and idealistic. This side link from the reading provides a critical comparison of the two oaths and is very interesting to read: In the end, I think that the modern oath diplomatically addresses the appropriate issues and sets the tone of responsibility and humility albeit overly optimistic.

Alana Chin

Week 4 Body & Medicine Oath, By Isaac Arjonilla

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

In this week’s blog entries we were required to write an oath for our major, the only problem would be finding a major I actually want to commit to. I am currently enrolled as Biology major, but I am not entirely sure of it.

I swear that as a Biologist I will fulfill this oath to the best of my abilities:


I will constantly try to better the world through the means of science, and ethics.


I will follow the research done by Biologists before me and I will do my best to further that research. I will never use my knowledge to do harm onto anyone.


I will never harm any other living being, and any knowledge and research I will share with my other peers in order to further develop the scientific community.


I will always act as a professional under any circumstance, take pride in my work, and respect all of my peers, and fellow scientists.

As god as my witness , I will not do anything that will harm or violate any part of the oath I have just given. With time,I will hopefully help people, improve society, and make a change in the world, one that is severely needed.

Celebrate the World

-Isaac Arjonilla

Week 4-Human Body and Medicine by Matt Kramer

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

This week’s lecture and focus on the human body and the practicing of medicine as it’s related to art was very interesting.  Since the time of the creation of the Hippocratic Oath in 4th century B.C., people have believed that physicians and surgeons treat their work as art.  Paying extremely close attention to detail in order to treat their patients like works of art, making sure not to make mistakes, and keeping them safe.  

I have never been one to be extremely comfortable with the human anatomy.  Talk of blood and guts and organs always seemed to, embarrassingly, creep me out.  But, after this week’s lecture I have started to become a little more comfortable with the interior of human bodies and realize how they can be appreciated and used to portray something beautiful.  The human body itself is beautiful and it can also be a beautiful piece of art as well.  I had gone to the “Body Worlds” art exhibit when I was in high school, but I had never appreciated the cadavers and skeletons and such to be more than just that.  I had not been able to see the real beauty and art-form in them.  But when Professor Vesna brought the exhibit up in class I began to remember my trip there, and how it really was something “cool” and spectacular.  


I had always thought that the human body as it was portrayed externally, and in photography, was something to marvel at, but not until now could I be somewhat comfortable with the internal human.  But it really is something amazing, that we as humans, have so many different body parts and organs that all have their own separate functions, but when working together, create something as complex and powerful as the average human is.  The human body truly is a work of art.  


I even came across a photo of someone who had tattooed on their arm, what the inside of the arm would look like.  It is actually done really well and leads me and I’m sure many others to appreciate the beauty of the human body.  Even just the muscles and veins that are portrayed, are so detailed and vivid.  


In an age where people are so concerned with how they look, in terms of contemporary judgments on beauty, it is important for people to realize that beauty comes in many forms, and the human body is always something extremely marvelous and unique.  Plastic surgery can only do so much for a person, and it is imperative that people appreciate their bodies for what they are.

Week 4: A Filmmaker’s Oath by Ryan Andre Magsino

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

Our Eyes, "the ultimate image recorder"?

Our Eyes, "the ultimate image recorder"?

Week 4: A Filmmaker’s Oath (Draft) by Ryan Andre Magsino

Although I have yet to proclaim a major/field of study, cinematography has always been one of my peak interests. From screenwriting to filming to editing, there are multitudes of techniques and reasoning behind them. Keeping in mind that the Hippocratic Oath was aimed toward the ethical practice of medicine, I too have drafted a somewhat similar oath but in relation to the the role of a filmmaker.

“I swear to upkeep, to the best of my ability and creativity, the following assertions:

I will respect the well-earned artistic feats of filmmakers in whose path I follow, and will gladly allow others who follow my path to bask in the knowledge of my own artistry.

I will incorporate, for the benefit of humanity, visual aesthetics in an attempt to appeal to the senses and emotions of a given audience.

I will recall that there is a science to film, not merely just an art, and that light exposure, camera focus and auditory resonance may overtake the screenwriter’s script or the editor’s planned rearrangement.

I will not be ashamed to state “I am unable,” nor will I merely compromise to such thought without ascertaining the extent of my resources.

I will respect the freedoms and rights of those portrayed in the footage so long as they allow me the freedom and right to pursue my own freedom of speech.

I will prevent unpreparedness whenever I can, albeit bringing a fully-charged spare battery, additional blank tapes, camera mount(s), proper lighting,…etc.

I will bear in mind that I too remain a member of society. As such, I hold the duty to contribute back by bettering or pleasing said society. (i.e. Producing footage that inspires or awes others)

So long as I do not violate this oath, allow me to take pleasure in life and art. May I be respected and revered not only for the product of my profession but for the thought put into producing it. Lastly, allow me to continue living through the thrills of filmmaking so as to stir others.”

Related Link: (Directory filled with links on Film Theory)

Week 4- On the Hippocratic Oath by Kimberlie Shiao

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

Dr. Louis Lasagna’s modern rendition of the Hippocratic Oath is markedly different from the original in that his 1964 version emphasizes empathy. Lasagna’s version also specifically mentions humility, moderation, and privacy, leaving out Hippocrates’s specific mentions of abortion, euthanasia and capital punishment. Is this good or is this bad? It could be easy to jump to the conclusion that Dr. Lasagna’s oath is more ethically flexible, and thus not holding doctors to actual moral standards. But I think it shows a proper humility that many perceive lacking in science, and it also acknowledges a more secular and open minded nature of a modern world that is growing increasingly larger. The added value- most noticeably privacy- also reflects a modern day value but also is perhaps the influence of the art world. Emotional arguments for values like medical privacy are often seen in art; the movie Gattaca that we watched in class showed how unsettling lack of DNA privacy could be in a futuristic world centered around eugenics. I think that the reason that privacy was added to Dr. Lasagna’s oath was the same reason abortion, euthanasia, and capital punishment were taken out. Arguments from places such as journalism and literature have made us question which values we should prioritize over others. Thus, I think that Dr. Lasagna’s oath is quite is a very fitting modification; it calls on the more emotional side, to remember not only training and ethics, but compassion, humility, the community, and the individual. Although personally I feel the oath is a little loftily idealistic for a doctor to strictly adhere to (mainly in terms of empathy), I also feel it presents a good goal of what a doctor should hope to achieve with his career and life.

-Kimberlie Shiao

week_4_Humanbodymedicine; The Democratic Oath by Devin Quinlan

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

In both the original Hippocratic Oath and the 1964 “modern” version, the main concern is with patient well-being and the maintaining of ethical societal standards. As a bioengineer, if I were to write my own oath, it would be far too similar to the existing oaths to be interesting at all. With that being said, I do have some issues with the Hippocratic Oath and it’s interpretation in society today.

With the rapid growth and expansion of our current scientific technology, there have inevitably been some new developments, such as stem cell research, plastic surgery, cloning, and of course abortion. According to many people, these developments do not follow the Hippocratic Oath, and because Hippocrates said in 400 B.C. that things like abortions were not allowed, people stick to his ideas instead of reevaluating the issue in the context of modern society. The “modern” oath at least leaves out  specific mention of procedures, but still holds the position that a doctor should not “play God.” This particular line bothers me most, because although it has good intentions, it effectively limits what a doctor is allowed to do in the name of scientific progression. Now, I’m not saying that a doctor should ever kill someone, but developments in the areas of cloning and stem cell research specifically should not be hindered because of an oath imposed on every doctor who wants to establish a practice. Ultimately, while both Hippocratic Oaths had good intentions, the ultimate goal of the doctor is to increase human happiness.

This goal sounds very similar to what was already outlined in the Hippocratic Oath, but the primary difference is that instead of society’s idea of happiness being thrust upon a patient, the patients themselves should be able to decide what happiness is to them. For instance, a doctor who performs plastic surgery should not be portrayed as evil just because he wants to make people feel better about themselves, and a doctor who performs abortions should not be evil because he wants to alleviate a woman from 18 years of misery and poverty.

In fact, I don’t believe that procedures like plastic surgery or abortion are bad at all. There are always the arguments against these procedures, most of which focus on an individual claiming that they wouldn’t do the procedure themselves, so therefore nobody else should have it either. Why should people be able to force their ideas onto others? If someone doesn’t want to have a surgery, they shouldn’t proceed with the surgery. To support their argument, people against plastic surgery, for instance, often put up pictures of people like Michael Jackson, showing how plastic surgery can go wrong and you can look terrible (Michael, however, might love the way he looks and that is perfectly fine). There are, however, other, better examples of plastic surgery, my favorite being Jennifer Aniston’s nose job. She had what is called a deviated septum, otherwise known as a crooked nose. I know firsthand that a deviated septum is not fun, and in fact getting plastic surgery did more for Aniston than make her look better, it also allowed her to breathe easier, especially when trying to sleep. While this example shows another benefit to the surgery than image, even things such as breast implants make women feel much better about themselves, and that is all a doctor should ever aim for.

In the end, if doctors must take an oath, it should be that they will, to the best of their ability, attempt to increase the happiness of their patients by letting them make informed decisions and ultimately decide whether or not to use the services that the doctor can provide and the technology that our society has developed. There should be no limits to what technology we can use as long as it has these ideas in mind.

Devin Quinlan

link to Aniston interview:,,20010295,00.html

Week 4 Human Body and Medicine by Mindy Truong

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

The Hippocratic Oath that is taken by physicians deals with the ethical practice of medicine. In this oath, the practice of medicine and art are interchangeable words that hold no difference. Written in the 4th Century B.C., the oath considered practicing medicine as a form of art. Physicians who take this oath swear to practice medicine with good intent and do no harm to anyone.

Physical beauty can be considered a form of art. In today’s society, it is common to see medical practitioners perform plastic surgery to enhance such beauty. However, there are stories heard all around about the surgeries performed by doctors who are not capable of performing such surgical procedures. Such “doctors” do not have enough credentials still perform surgeries on unsusceptible patients who have an urge to have an ideal look of beauty.

It has been a great deal of time since the Hippocratic Oath was written, and now not many seem to consider art and medicine as interchangeable words. However, I think, anatomy itself is a form of art. Many artists study the human anatomy in detail and incorporate it in their works. It’s fascinating to me how far art and anatomy can go hand in hand. As a science major who is interested in the medicine and fields that relate to it, this topic sparked a major interest in me. I came across a site that contained artwork found on the streets that integrated the human anatomy in their works. The site started out as a blog that tried to educate people about medical illustration and slowly became a site that showed how anatomy is used in art all around. On the site’s page the creator wrote something that I very much agreed with. “Anatomical illustration and medical imaging have broken out of the confines of the medical world and are being used by artists and designers to bring a human and emotional element to their work—as well as a touch of memento mori. Anatomy is very much a part of pop culture and artists are finding innovative ways to portray it every single day.” ( Below is a link to the gallery page of the site but the home page has blogs that contain a bunch of pictures that shows usage of art and anatomy. Venture the whole site.

The pictures below are from random blogs found on the home page of streetanatomy.





Mindy Truong

Week 4_Self-alienation and Art_Wenjing Wu

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

It seems to me that the “self-alienation” which Benjamin mentioned in the end of his article turns out to be more and more noteworthy. The video of Orlan’s plastic surgery art that Prof. Vesna showed us on class was everything but aesthetically pleasing for me. The information I get from Orlan’s and Stelarc’s art is that modern human beings are becoming so objective towards our own body that the primitive need of avoiding pain can be divorced from the pursuit of art. I tracked a little bit further on the link of  the Modern Version of Hippocratic Oath and found the responses(both from doctors and non-doctors) far more interesting than the oath itself. Opinions are diverse. Medical students tended to think the original Hippocratic Oath is outdated and inappropriate due to the increasing specialization, soaring medical technology and public health policies, etc. They also complained about the brutal medical education system such as the way residencies are trained. Meanwhile, most non-doctors thought highly of the role of ethic constrainments that the oath played, for nowadays doctors “are there just for the big bucks”. And the noble motivation of taking good care of people’s health changed into sheer indifference towards the sufferings of human companions. Based on the reasons above, the Hippocractic Oath now is reckoned as the “Hypocritic Oath” by many people.oath1 At the same time , the networking technology today is also developing into an intrusive issue for personal privacy. Google’s Hard Drive(GDrive), for example, allows users to store their personal documents up in the network cloud. Are you really OK with that, even if Google has the access to your documents at any time? The era of “Dispersed Authorship” mentioned by Roy Ascott is scary to me, let alone the Megan Meier case.

After Stefanie introduced us the amazing animation “Symphony” by Erick Oh and a few clicks on the links that offered by the course webpage(er…I skipped the “flesh and blood” part), I realized how pessimistic and narrow my previous view is. There are tremendous amount of artists making great effort to exhibit their serious(or playful?) meditation about the problems originated from medicines, diseases and human bodies. Such as Virgil Wong’s Male Pregnancy and Genochoice, which involved public interactions in the projects, and Kenneth Snelson’s sculptures that applied nature’s physical forces into 3 dimensional space. easy_k_smal_sculpture

Finally, I find myself most intrigued by those art works with “emotional warmth”, as I call them. One of Alberto’s recommendations, Jonathan Harris’s Story Balloons is my favorite piece(Here’s his talk on, including another awesome project “we feel fine”). By taking pictures of randomly picked strangers in an Asian country holding colorful balloons with their wishes on them, as well as pictures of the individual’s hands and a funny face, he provoked his audience to know and to care more about what’s happening to the people around. Another fabulous job was Life Writer by Laurent Mignonneau and Christa Sommerer. In this project, users can create digital creature(they can move around!) through the act of typing.
Jonathan Harris’s Story Balloons


Life Writer 2006, Laurent Mignonneau and Christa Sommerer


Week 4_ My Oath to Serve by Christine Vu

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

       During this week’s lecture, I was very excited to see that the importance of health care and medical practice was addressed. After reading the Hippocratic Oath, I gained an understanding of the purpose of an oath. During that time, it was either used as a testimony to show their dedication to their profession or a personal statement that they vow to achieve during their lifetime. But something I have noticed during our generation is that we have learned to value actions rather than words. As a student striving to be a successful Pharmacist, the desires of my heart will be made evident through my decisions and actions. But, if I were to write my own oath, this is how it would go:

       I present this oath to all of humanity. I pledge to use what God has given me to benefit the human public. With my talents and education, I am an instrument of healing.
       I devote my time to Microbiology, Imminology, and Molecular Genetics in hopes of someday becoming a skilled worker.I will use my acquired knowledge of disease and bacteria to cater to research and health care. I will move to create programs to bring attention to the issues of healthcare.
       I will act as a mediator within the government to encourage more funds set aside to improve foreign relations. I will utilize America’s advanced technology, medical practice, and professions to assist countries outside our borders. I will work to improve health care in third world countries. I will make sure that more attention will be brought to the kids that are dying from unsanitary conditions. I will find a way to send our doctors and researchers to these countries to save lives. I will not neglect my purpose to make dreams possible for the less fortunate. Into whatever scenario I may encounter, I will soften my heart and be open-minded. I will remember to keep a student-like mindset in order to humble myself under my mentors.
       I will take on the role as a scientist as well as an artist. I will use my creativity to find alternatives in order to better a situation. I will not be boastful or aggressive when I face obstacles or people who oppose me.
       I will also serve as a missionary. Not only will I work to improve the health of individuals, I will strongly encourage and provide opportunities by sharing my experiences as a Christian. In countries where religion is not safe, I will do my best to provide assurance and hope. I will teach about faith to those who are lost.
I will never forget my true purpose in my life, and that is to act obediently to serve my Savior through my behavior.