La sofferenza e la buona morte
Sommario: 1. Malattia, sofferenza e problema del senso. 2. Morire nell’età della tecnica: censura, medicalizzazione, espropriazione della morte. 3. La ‘buona morte’ e la bioetica contemporanea. 4. L’etica dell’accompagnamento del morente e il movimento delle cure palliative. 5. Conclusioni.
Abstract: The paper examines the relationship between the question of suffering near the end of life and the euthanasia debate. It is argued that the unbearableness of suffering stems from the inability to confer any meaning on it, and that this inability is due to the contemporary conditions of dying in
technological society; the of death, the usual practice of lying to dying patients, the medicalisation of death and an idea of human dignity as sheer auto-determination and independency from others, all cooperate to make almost impossible and to suggest doing away oneself as the only way out. It is argued that what is most needed, for patients approaching the end of life, is rather a different way care, centred on pain relief and on a holistic attention to their psychological and spiritual needs; this may help to rebuild some kind of an ethos of death, and to reconcile ourselves our mortal nature thanks to the solidarity of carers who confront their own mortality as well. The movement of palliative medicine, it is concluded, is an important ally in this process.
Keywords: medicalisation of death, human dignity, ethics, euthanasia, suffering.