Debating Forced Medical Feeding: a Critical Examination of Israeli Responses to Hunger Strikes
In this talk, I will critically examine Israeli institutional responses to hunger strikes (mainly by Palestinian prisoners). A crucial part of the background is the unique clause 15 of Israel’s Patient’s Rights Act of 1996, which allows forced, life-saving treatment in the expectation of retroactive consent. Recently, however, the government initiated legislation aimed to mandate forced feeding for reasons that include not only concern for the hunger striker’s life, but also concern for state security. The National Bioethics Council unanimously opposed this expansion of grounds for forced treatment, though a minority within the Council endorsed placing hunger strikers in a separate category from other patients. I will discuss the ethical and political values expressed in this debate, as well as the contestable notion of retroactive consent.
Date: 20 February 2020, 17:30 (Thursday, 5th week, Hilary 2020)
Venue: St Cross College, St Giles OX1 3LZ
Venue Details: Lecture Theatre
Speaker: Professor Noam Zohar (Bar Ilan University)
Organising department: Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics
Organiser: Dr Doug McConnell (University of Oxford)
Organiser contact email address:
Host: Dr Doug McConnell (University of Oxford)
Part of: New St Cross Special Ethics Seminar Series
Topics: Patient refusal of treatment, Hunger strikes, Involuntary treatment, Informed consent (Medical law)--Moral and ethical aspects, Prisoners
Booking required?: Required
Booking url:
Cost: Free
Audience: Public
Editor: Rachel Gaminiratne