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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jacob M. Appel

Born February 21, 1973 (1973-02-21) (age 37)
New York City
Occupation Author, bioethicist
Nationality American
Period 1997-present
Genres short story, essay, drama

Jacob M. Appel (born February 21, 1973) is an American author, bioethicist and social critic. He is best known for his short stories, his work as a playwright, and his writing in the fields of reproductive ethics, organ donation, neuroethics and euthanasia.



Appel was born in the Bronx and grew up in Scarsdale, New York.[1] He received a B.A. and an M.A., both from Brown University; an M.A. and an M.Phil from Columbia University; an M.D. from Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons, an M.F.A. in creative writing from New York University, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He has been admitted to the bar in New York and Rhode Island.


Over one hundred of Appel's short stories have been published in numerous literary journals, including Agni[2], The Alaska Quarterly Review, Colorado Review, Florida Review, Green Mountains Review, The Greensboro Review, Gulf Stream Magazine, The Iowa Review, Lake Effect, Louisiana Literature, Michigan Quarterly Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Raritan Quarterly Review, Shenandoah, South Dakota Review, Southern Humanities Review, Southwest Review, StoryQuarterly, StorySouth[3], The Threepenny Review, West Branch, and Xavier Review.

The Boston Review named his short story, "Shell Game with Organs" the winner of its 1998 short fiction contest. He has won three New Millennium Writings first prizes in fiction (in 2004, 2007, 2008) for his short stories "Enoch Arden's One Night Stands,"[4] "Hazardous Cargoes,"[5] and "The Appraisal" (shared with Asha Vose).[6] He won the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Award for best short story in 2004[7] and a Sherwood Anderson Foundation grant in 2005.[8] Appel's stories have also won competitions held by The Missouri Review, Arts & Letters, Briar Cliff Review, North American Review, and Sycamore Review. His story "Counting" was short-listed for the O. Henry Award in 2001. In 2006 and 2007, he received a Special Mention by the Pushcart Prize. In 2007 and 2008, his short stories were listed among the notable works of the year by The Best American Short Stories and The Best American Nonrequired Reading.

Appel is also an accomplished playwright, with his play The Mistress of Wholesome winning the 2008 Writer’s Digest writing competition. His plays have been performed by companies across the U.S., including the Detroit Repertory Theatre, Heller Theatre, and Epilogue Players.[9][10]

Appel has taught creative writing at the Gotham Writers' Workshop and New York University.



Academic bioethics

As a professional bioethicist, Appel has published in Hastings Center Report, The Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, The Journal of Medical Ethics, Bulletin of the History of Medicine, and GeneWatch, the journal of the Council for Responsible Genetics.

Appel has argued in favor of abortion rights, assisted suicide (not only for the terminally ill, but also for those suffering from long-term mental illness), and fertility treatment for homosexuals.[11][12] He has also argued against electronic medical records.[13] He has raised concerns regarding the possibility that employers will require their employees to use pharmaceuticals for cognitive enhancement and has urged that death row inmates be eligible to receive kidney transplants.[14][15] He generated considerable controversy for endorsing the mandatory use of preimplantation genetic diagnosis as part of the in vitro fertilization process to prevent the implantation of embryos carrying severe genetic defects.[16][17] Appel has also written in support of an "open border" immigration policy.[18]

He has taught medical ethics at New York University, Columbia University and at Brown University's Alpert Medical School.


Appel writes for both The Huffington Post and Opposing Views. He has staked out a libertarian position of many bioethical issues, advocating a worldview that he describes as "a culture of liberty."[19] He has also authored opinion pieces in The New York Times, New York Daily News, Chicago Tribune, Orlando Sentinel, Albany Times-Union, Tucson Citizen, Detroit Free Press, New Haven Register and The Providence Journal.[20][21][22][23][24]


External links


  1. ^ Rosenblum, Constance. Boulevard of Dreams, New York University Press, 2009, P. 174
  2. ^ The Frying Finn in AGNI
  3. ^ "Grappling" in StorySouth
  4. ^ Enoch Arden's One Night Stands
  5. ^ Hazardous Cargoes
  6. ^ The Appraisal
  7. ^ Larson, Susan. "Winner's Circle" New Orleans Times-Picayune December 5, 2004
  8. ^ Greensboro News & Record, October 23, 2005
  9. ^ Gridley, Jesse. "Lighting Up the Stage," Writers Digest, December 2008, P. 50
  10. ^ Shade, Karen. "Belles Are Back: Players Revisit Characters" Tulsa World, June 24, 2007
  11. ^ Bioethics Article
  12. ^ Article from Hastings Center
  13. ^ Chicago Tribune article
  14. ^ J M Appel When the boss turns pusher: a proposal for employee protections in the age of cosmetic neurology J Med Ethics 2008; 34: 616-618
  15. ^ Appel, JM. “Wanted Dead or Alive? Kidney Transplantation in Inmates Awaiting Execution,” The Journal of Clinical Ethics. Volume 16, Number 1. Spring 2005. Retrieved on 2-10-09
  16. ^ OPINION: Mandatory Genetic Testing isn't Eugenics, it's Smart Science
  17. ^ Smith, WJ. OPINION: Pushing Eugenics as Smart Science
  18. ^ An Ethical Case for Open Borders
  19. ^ A Culture of Liberty Huffington Post, July 21, 2009.
  20. ^ Finally give N.Y. families end-of-life decisionmaking power, New York Daily News, Sept. 6, 2009
  21. ^ Guest Opinion, Benefits of requiring genetic testing for in vitro fertilization are clear, Tucson Citizen, March 10, 2009
  22. ^ JM Appel. Why shared medical database is wrong prescription. Orlando Sentinel, December 30, 2008
  23. ^ Appel, Jacob M. 'Gene-nappers,’ like identity thieves, new threat of digital age, The New Haven Register, Nov. 5, 2009
  24. ^ Health Care Hard to Recognize, Tough to Define. Albany Times-Union, Nov. 12, 2009
  25. ^ Motika, Libby. Bonitanicum Seedlings. Palisadian Post June 1, 2006
  26. ^ Shade, Karen "Round the Bend Players offer funny, sometimes dark story," Tulsa World, August 24, 2006
  27. ^ Readling, Mike. "IRSC's Fine Arts Season promises mix of dance, drama, musical theater," Treasure Coast Palm August 28, 2009
  28. ^ Could you have done better? August 16, 2008
  29. ^ Highlights of fall season, Detroit Free Press, August 23, 2009
  30. ^ Reinink, Amy, "Women claim a dramatic spot in Laurel," Business Gazette, August 27, 2009


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

It is easy to let men alone when they do things our way. The test of a truly enlightened civilization is one that lets people alone, to pursue their own predilections, even when the majority of us prefer to live our lives very differently from theirs.

Jacob M. Appel (born February 21, 1973, in New York City) is an American author best known for his short stories, plays, and for his work as a bioethicist.


  • Some see "God" as "dog" spelled backwards. I see "God" as "cat" spelled with a vivid imagination.
  • Do you know what's wrong with this country? A man doesn't vote, and doesn't pay his taxes, and doesn't have a driver’s license — and, after all that, he still ends up on jury duty. It's downright un-American.
  • Republicans are nothing more than Democrats with poor judgment.
  • I have never been to prison, but I've been to law school...
  • If you give a man a hammer, he thinks he can solve all problems by pounding. Well, God gave men penises....
  • Depression and hopelessness are not the only reasons terminally ill patients wish to end their lives. Many individuals see nothing undignified about choosing to end their lives at the time and manner of their choosing — and many view such a choice as the meaningful culmination of a good life.
  • I dream of the day when women are not afraid to walk the streets with pins reading, "I had an abortion and it was the right decision," and when station wagons bear bumper-stickers announcing, "Thank me for having an abortion when I wasn't ready to be a parent."
  • Somehow, many supporters of abortion rights have been lulled into accepting the rhetoric that abortion should be "safe, legal and rare." That may be good language for winning elections, but it does a profound disservice to the millions of women who have abortions in this nation each year. Abortions should be safe and legal. That goes without saying. But rare? Abortions should be as frequent or as infrequent as are unwanted pregnancies.
  • Victory [over homophobia] may require five or maybe 20 years. Yet I have no doubt that "don't ask, don't tell" and same-sex adoption bans will be as unspeakable and inexplicable to my grandchildren as counting a slave as three-fifths of a human being.
  • The freedom to travel and to settle where one wishes, in pursuit of political freedom or economic opportunity, is among the most basic of human rights....The principal difference between the Irish peasants who once fled the potato blight on coffin ships, and the desperate Haitian rafters that our navy forcibly repatriates today, is bad timing.
  • The belief that fetuses have the same inherent moral value as living human beings—that “killing” a fetus is no different that slaughtering a ten-year-old child—is a breathtakingly dangerous position. Because if this is true, then abortion providers are indeed “murderers” and “maniacs,” and the United States Supreme Court is complicit in genocide, and this great democratic nation that we live in is rotten to its very core. I doubt many people truly believe that—not even the most vocal opponents of legal abortion. I certainly hope few people believe this. But if the hardcore anti-abortion activists do not believe this, then they have a moral obligation to step back from this rhetorical brink...."
  • Much as we do not permit convicted pedophiles to teach kindergarten or convicted hijackers to board airplanes, common sense dictates that individuals who have been imprisoned for plotting violence against abortion clinics should never again be permitted anywhere near such facilities.
  • I am grateful that I have rights in the proverbial public square--but, as a practical matter, my most cherished rights are those that I possess in my bedroom and hospital room and death chamber.
  • Most people are far more concerned that they can control their own bodies than they are about petitioning Congress.
  • The cold, cruel reality is that with one current justice now approaching ninety, and four others over seventy, the day will inevitably arrive when a sitting justice lies in an intensive care unit, both unable to resign and unable to resume his or her duties.

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