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German Research Foundation approves research unit to study extreme experiences in life
Date:1/8/2014

The German Research Foundation (DFG) is establishing a new research unit at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU). The interdisciplinary group will examine how new biomedical capabilities can lead to extreme experiences in human life. Specifically, it deals with issues arising from the technologically assisted reproduction or medically assisted death. The DFG Research Unit "Life Sciences, Life Writing: Extreme Experience in Human Life between Biomedical Explanations and Worldly Experience" offers 12 doctoral candidates a structured research and training program, where they can gain qualifications and early scientific independence starting April 2014. The German Research Foundation will initially provide approximately EUR 2 million to the research unit for four and a half years.

"We want this research unit to expand the natural sciencesmedical research perspective of extreme experience in human life to include the worldly experience that the Humanities and Cultural Studies examine. Doing so promises to provide us with new perspectives on people as human beings," said the coordinator of the new research unit and director of the Institute of the History, Philosophy, and Ethics of Medicine, Professor Norbert W. Paul. The unit will focus on extreme experiences in physicality, such as that in eating disorders, in capabilities, including the ability to become a member of society for those suffering posttraumatic stress disorder, or with regard to temporal dimensions, including the life-long impact people suffer from premature birth.

The goal of the new research unit is to develop joint methodological approaches to extreme human experience where medicine, the individual, and society interact. "The research unit will serve as a platform for young researchers to examine the tension between biomedical explanations and worldly dimensions and to research what we refer to as extreme experiences in human life. One such extreme experience is medically a
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Contact: Dr. Norbert W. Paul
npaul@uni-mainz.de
49-613-139-37355
Johannes Gutenberg Universitaet Mainz
Source:Eurekalert

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