Medicine And Books

Seduced by Death: Doctors, Patients, and the Dutch Cure

BMJ 1997; 314 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.314.7082.761 (Published 08 March 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:761
  1. Tony Sheldon, medical journalist
  1. Utrecht, Netherlands

    Herbert Hendin / W W Norton, $27.50, pp 256 ISBN 0 393 04003 8

    “If e'er I sow my wheat wi'out brinin, I'm a Dutchman,” Luke tells Maggie in George Eliot's Mill On The Floss. Today, the Dutch remain fools for doing things differently as far as Professor Herbert Hendin's hatchet job on Dutch euthanasia policy, Seduced by Death, is concerned.

    Hendin—professor of psychiatry at New York Medical College and executive director of the American Suicide Foundation, which works to prevent suicide—vilifies a policy that allows a “bright and compassionate people” to wrongly end other people's lives in the name of humanitarian goals. At its worst, the book declines into generalised …

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