My Sister's Keeper Questions and Answers
by Jodi Picoult

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how do your personal and professional values influnce your understanding of the theme

Personal and professional values can influence one's understanding of the the theme, which is medical ethics, in a myriad ways. Speaking of personal ethics, a believe in fighting for life against all odds could cause one to side against Anna's quest for medical emancipation. On the other hand, a professional belief in absolute fairness could cause one to believe that she should do anything to help Kate.

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Steph Müller eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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I would argue that one of the most significant themes in this poignant novel is medical ethics. The big questions being asked here is whether it is fair and justified for Anna Fitzgerald to be expected to offer her kidney to her sister, Kate, who is dying of acute promyelocytic leukemia. The ethical problem, in my opinion, begins with the fact that, as Anna is well aware, she was conceived and born in order to be a compatible organ donor for her sister.

My personal ethics have a hard time coming to a conclusion on this one. On the one hand, I am a firm believer in personal choice, which means I can fully identify with Anna's desire to have final say over what happens to her body. On the other hand, I also believer in fighting for life, to the very last breath, which means that Anna should always be willing to help Kate.

From a professional point of view, while I am not in the medical field, I believe that fairness and justice needs to be promulgated in every professional situation. In order to promote fairness above all else, I would need to agree with Anna that she alone should have the authority to make decisions about her own body.