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Gilbert Meilaender

Contributing Editor

Gilbert Meilaender holds the Richard and Phyllis Duesenberg Chair in Theological Ethics at Valparaiso University. He was a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics (2002-2009). His latest books are Should We Live Forever?: The Ethical Ambiguities of Aging (Eerdmans, 2013) and Neither Beast nor God: The Dignity of the Human Person, published in 2009 as part of our New Atlantis Books series.


In The New Atlantis


Who Needs a Liberal Education?

Number 41 ~ Winter 2014

The Blessing of Children

Number 36 ~ Summer 2012

Transitional Humanity

Number 31 ~ Spring 2011

On Bioethics in Public

Number 26 ~ Fall 2009 - Winter 2010

Human Dignity and Public Bioethics

Number 17 ~ Summer 2007

Gifts of the Body

Number 13 ~ Summer 2006

Stem Cells and the Reagan Legacy

Number 6 ~ Summer 2004

War and Techne

Number 2 ~ Summer 2003

Bioethics and the Character of Human Life

Number 1 ~ Spring 2003

Other Publications


  • “Thirst for Life,” The Christian Century, April 12, 2013
  • “The Greatest Drama Ever,” Touchstone, March/April 2013
  • “Time For Love: The Place of Marriage and Children in the Thought of Stanley Hauerwas,” Journal of Religious Ethics, June 2012
  • “A Complete Life,” First Things, January 2012
  • “Optimistic or Pessimistic About America,” Commentary, November 13, 2011
  • “The Business of Medicine,” First Things, March 2011
  • “The Catholic I Am,” First Things, February 2011
  • “Faith Forming Culture,” First Things, January 2011
  • “After September 11,” Christian Century, September 26, 2009
  • “End of Discussion: Why Obama Should Have Kept the Bioethics Council,” Commonweal, August 14, 2009
  • “Stem Cells and Torture,” The Weekly Standard, June 8, 2009
  • “Arguments Against President Obama’s Stem Cell Policies,” Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News, May 1, 2009
  • “Progress Without Pause,” First Things, February 2009
  • “Education and Soulcraft,” First Things, November 2008
  • “The Giving and Taking of Organs,” First Things, March 2008
  • “Chapter 11: Human Dignity,” Human Dignity and Bioethics: Essays Commissioned by the President's Council on Bioethics, March 2008
  • “Commentary on Churchland,” Human Dignity and Bioethics: Essays Commissioned by the President's Council on Bioethics, March 2008
  • “Conscience and Authority,” First Things, November 2007
  • “Angels in the Wilderness,” Touchstone, July—August 2007
  • “Enough of God,” Touchstone, May 2007
  • “Wrong from Wright,” First Things, February 2007
  • “Broken Bodies Redeemed,” Touchstone, January/February 2007
  • “Hold the Granola,” First Things, February 2006
  • “That Thing in a Petri Dish,” National Review Online, February 21, 2006
  • “Judging Politics,” First Things, January 2006
  • “Against Consensus: Christians and Public Bioethics,” Studies in Christian Ethics, 2005
  • “C.S. Lewis’s Visionary World,” Christian Century, November 29, 2005
  • “C.S. Lewis on Moral Education,” Imprimis, October 2005
  • “Stem Cell Job,” Touchstone, September 2005
  • “Why We Work,” First Things, June/July 2005
  • “Living Life’s End,” First Things, May 2005
  • “Looking for Personality,” First Things, October 2007
  • “The Politics of Bioethics,” The Weekly Standard, April 12, 2004
  • “Talking Democracy,” First Things, April 2004
  • “Why Remember?,” First Things, August/September 2003
  • “Therapeutic Cloning,” New England Journal of Medicine, November 14, 2002
  • “Review: Choose Life,” The Review of Politics, Summer 2002
  • “Spare Embryos,” The Weekly Standard, August 17, 2002
  • “Paul Ramsey’s Ethics,” The Weekly Standard, May 4, 2002
  • “The Mess That Is Marriage,” First Things, February 2002
  • “Between Beasts and Gods,” First Things, January 2002
  • “In Search of Wisdom: Bioethics and the Character of the Human Life,” The President’s Council on Bioethics, January 2002
  • “The Point of a Ban,” Hastings Center Report, 2001
  • “Capital and Other Punishments,” First Things, November 2001
  • “Response to Human Harvest,” Touchstone, June 2001
  • “Sweet Necessities: Food, Sex, and Saint Augustine,” Journal of Religious Ethics, Spring 2001
  • “Bioethics vs. Human Dignity,” The Weekly Standard, February 12, 2001
  • “Designing our Descendents,” First Things, January 2001
  • “Vocation: Divine Summons,” Christian Century, November 1, 2000
  • “Foundations of Christian Bioethics,” First Things, November 2000
  • “What Sex Is – And Is For,” First Things, April 2000
  • “Michael Walzer: Just and Unjust Wars (1977),” First Things, March 2000
  • “Homosexuality in Christian Perspective,” Things That Count, 1999
  • “A New Sexual Revolution,” Christian Century, March 3, 1999
  • “I Want to Burden My Loved Ones,” Things That Count, 1999
  • “Review: Selling Out,” The Review of Politics, Autumn 1999
  • Dependent Rational Animals: Why Human Beings Need the Virtues and The MacIntyre Reader,” First Things, October 1999
  • “C.S. Lewis: Memories and Reflection,” First Things, August/September 1999
  • “The Last Word,” First Things, June/July 1999
  • “Friendship in the Classical World,” First Things, May 1999
  • “The Slowness of the Good,” First Things, March 1999
  • “Man as Lucifer,” First Things, February 1999
  • “So You Want to Go to College,” First Things, January 1999
  • “Book Reviews: Sex, Gender, and Christian Ethics, by Lisa Sowle Cahill,” Studies in Christian Ethics, 1998
  • “Shall We Clone?,” First Things, October 1998
  • “The Everyday C.S. Lewis,” First Things, August/September 1998
  • “Affirming Ourselves to Death,” First Things, June/July 1998
  • “Gays Marrying,” First Things, May 1998
  • “A Philosopher of Virtue,” First Things, April 1998
  • “Meaningful Work,” First Things, January 1998
  • “Ordinary and Extraordinary Treatments,” Theological Studies, 1997
  • “The Venture of Marriage,” Logia, 1997
  • “In His Steps,” First Things, December 1997
  • “Recovering Christendom,” First Things, November 1997
  • “Begetting and Cloning,” First Things, June/July 1997
  • “Creatures of Place and Time: Reflections on Moving,” First Things, April 1997
  • “Review: Embodying Forgiveness,” Journal of Religion, April 1997
  • “Escaping from Legalism: Is it Possible?,” Hastings Center Report, 1996
  • “Religion in a Public Voice,” First Things, December 1996
  • “Treating the Person,” First Things, November 1996
  • “Keeping Company,” First Things, October 1996
  • “Integrity,” First Things, May 1996
  • “Second Thoughts About Body Parts,” First Things, May 1996
  • “Belonging,” First Things, January 1996
  • “Not Much Help,” First Things, December 1995
  • “Defending Diversity,” First Things, November 1995
  • “Victim and Victor,” First Things, October 1995
  • “The Eclipse of Fatherhood,” First Things, June/July 1995
  • “Less Law? Or Different Law?,” Hastings Center Report, 1994
  • “Our Vocabularies, Our Selves,” Hastings Center Report, 1994
  • “On Bringing One’s Life to a Point,” First Things, November 1994
  • “A Matter of Principles?,” First Things, May 1994
  • “The Sanctity of Life Seduced: A Symposium on Medical Ethics,” First Things, April 1994
  • “Terra Es Animata: On Having a Life,” Hastings Center Report, 1993
  • “One Soul in Bodies Twain: The Lure of Friendship,” Christian Century, November 3, 1993
  • “The Origins of Morality,” First Things, November 1993
  • “Men and Women – Can We Be Friends?,” First Things, June/July 1993
  • “Review: A Feminist Medical Ethics?,” Hastings Center Report, May—June 1993
  • “Jesus Through the Eyes of John Rawls,” First Things, April 1993
  • “Marriage in Counterpoint and Harmony,” First Things, June/July 1992
  • “The Rapist and the Virgin,” First Things, May 1992
  • “The One and the Many,” First Things, December 1991
  • “‘Love's Casuistry’: Paul Ramsey on Caring for the Terminally Ill,” The Journal of Religious Ethics, Fall 1991
  • “I Want To Burden My Loved Ones,” First Things, October 1991
  • “How Churches Crack Up: The Case of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod,” First Things, June/July 1991
  • “Mortality: The Measure of Our Days,” First Things, February 1991
  • “What Families Are For,” First Things, October 1990
  • “Hank Gathers and Cultural Christianity,” First Things, August/September 1990
  • “Being Modern,” First Things, August/September 1990
  • “Psychoanalyzing C.S. Lewis,” Christian Century, May 16-23, 1990
  • “Discerning to a Point,” First Things, April 1990
  • “Abortion: The Right to an Argument,” Hastings Center Report, November—December 1989
  • “On William F. May: Corrected Vision for Medical Ethics,” Second Opinion, March 1989
  • “Can Hospital Have Moral Objections?,” Hastings Center Report, October—November 1987
  • “Case Studies: The Anencephalic Newborn as Organ Donor,” Hastings Center Report, April 1986
  • “Review: Virtue for Self-Possessed Individuals,” Review of Politics, Spring 1986
  • “On Removing Food and Water,” Hastings Center Report, December 1984