Body Brokers: Inside America's Underground Trade in Human Remains

Body Brokers Inside America s Underground Trade in Human Remains You are a little soul carrying around a corpse Epictetus Wherever the corpse is there the vultures will follow Matthew Body Brokers is an audacious disturbing and compellingly written investi

  • Title: Body Brokers: Inside America's Underground Trade in Human Remains
  • Author: Annie Cheney
  • ISBN: 9780767917339
  • Page: 472
  • Format: Hardcover
  • You are a little soul carrying around a corpse Epictetus Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will follow Matthew 24 28 Body Brokers is an audacious, disturbing, and compellingly written investigative expos of the lucrative business of procuring, buying, and selling human cadavers and body parts Every year human corpses meant for anatomy classes, burial, or You are a little soul carrying around a corpse Epictetus Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will follow Matthew 24 28 Body Brokers is an audacious, disturbing, and compellingly written investigative expos of the lucrative business of procuring, buying, and selling human cadavers and body parts Every year human corpses meant for anatomy classes, burial, or cremation find their way into the hands of a shadowy group of entrepreneurs who profit by buying and selling human remains While the government has controls on organs and tissue meant for transplantation, these body brokers capitalize on the myriad other uses for dead bodies that receive no federal oversight whatsoever commercial seminars to introduce new medical gadgetry medical research studies and training courses and U.S Army land mine explosion tests A single corpse used for these purposes can generate up to 10,000 As journalist Annie Cheney found while reporting on this subject over the course of three years, when there s that much money to be made with no federal regulation, there are all sorts of shady and fascinating characters who are willing to employ questionable practices from deception and outright theft to acquire, market and distribute human bodies and parts In Michigan and New York she discovers funeral directors who buy corpses from medical schools and supply the parts to surgical equipment companies and associations of surgeons In California, she meets a crematorium owner who sold the body parts of people he was supposed to cremate, generating hundreds of thousands of dollars in profits In Florida, she attends a medical conference in a luxury hotel, where fresh torsos are delivered in Igloo coolers and displayed on gurneys in a room normally used for banquets That torso that you re living in right now is just flesh and bones to me To me, it s a product, says the New Jersey based broker presiding over the torsos Tracing the origins of body brokering from the resurrectionists of the nineteenth century to the entrepreneurs of today, Cheney chronicles how demand for cadavers has long driven unscrupulous funeral home, crematorium and medical school personnel to treat human bodies as commodities Gripping, often chilling, and sure to cause a reexamination of the American way of death, Body Brokers is both a captivating work of first person reportage and a surprising inside look at a little known aspect of the death care world.

    One thought on “Body Brokers: Inside America's Underground Trade in Human Remains”

    1. This book reminds me a lot of The Immoral Life of Henrietta Lacks - which I loved. It takes the disgusting process of brokering human body parts and weaves a really good non-fiction story. It reveals how this business has prospered from the grave robbers of the 1800's right up to the current problems as late as 2006. This book will make you look twice at the funeral, creamation, death process. Beware! 4 stars

    2. I read the article in Harper's Bazaar that resulted in this book- I have to say that I found the article more compelling and it seemed as is the author was stretching the story pretty thin- It's an expose on the little-known trade of human body parts in the USA that are used to market medical devices and techniques through training seminars. As the product of a medical family (and once very accustomed to opening the fridge to see if there was anything good to eat but being confronted by some dec [...]

    3. This book was incredible, but I'm too tired to write a decent review so will plan on doing that tomorrow. All I have to say now is it is fascinating, gruesome, disheartening, and a "must read".

    4. This book is like a horrible car crash you can't turn away from despite the carnage. The subject matter was disturbing yet I read this cover to cover, only putting it down to sleep.

    5. Honey, I wish I can scrub my brain and rid them of the nasty that is body brokers. They sound like scumbags who only see the money and dress up their acts with flimsy justifications that it's all noble. And begrudgingly, I have to admit that they do have a point: a lot of people really don't know where their remains really go nowadays. That's how they can posthumously get exploited, shipped into another state through UPS or FedEx, and dehumanized into being a "product" for their "trade." Ugh.My [...]

    6. Highly informational about the underground trade in a highly profitable commodity, my body. Book got a little tedious and detailed in many places with regards to names and dates which got really confusing. I just skipped over them and kept going. Good information to read about and store in the back of your mind for idle party chitchat.

    7. Very enlightening and educational peek into what can truly occur when making the decision of how to handle after life decisionsA must read while living

    8. 2.5 Had some great research and was informative, but there was a huge amount of filler, there needed to be content of value

    9. 1. My overall takeaway: Yes, there needs to be more regulations for corpses. Especially stories like Michael Brown and everyone who gets the bodies without family consent. But, if families donate the bodies to science and the bodies go to science no matter how they get there, who cares? You are dead. Your body would otherwise be rotting in the ground becoming food for bugs and worms. If you can help doctors with their trade and that same doctor saves the life of a loved one of the body they are [...]

    10. It’s hard to imagine subject matter more cringe-worthy than the for-profit tissue and body business. Perhaps this explains the relative obscurity of Annie Cheney’s Body Brokers: Inside America’s Underground Trade in Human Remains, a muckraking exposé on this for-profit, shockingly lucrative industry. Upon the book’s release, publications around the country gave it generally favorable reviews, and predicted that it should blow the lid off of this subject. But it never happened. Body Brok [...]

    11. Every family, at one time or another goes through the process of losing a loved one, along with the grieving process, you would hope that your loved one would be treated with respect and dignityt so. In the U.S at least, there is a thriving industry for body parts and whole corpses or cadavers. In her book 'Body Brokers', Investigative journalist Annie Cheney, exposes the inhuman practices of stealing parts of bodies and selling them to brokers who in turn sell them for the purposes of surgical [...]

    12. Cheney's account of brokers stealing morgue cadavers slated for cremation and cutting them up for sale like so many pieces of meat makes a lie of the whole facade of benevolent, scientific, medical altruism in America. We, in short, have reached the inevitable conclusion of Capitalism envisioned by Debord; a world where everybody, in the end, has been turned into a commodity, to be bought, packaged, and sold. The opening scene of a seminar in the banquet room of a swanky resort hotel in Florida [...]

    13. The book "Body Brokers" By Annie Cheney is an amazing book if your looking for gruesome descriptions of the process of brokering human body parts that some how turns into a good entertaining non-fiction book. Its a pretty dangerous read if your planning on being cremated, autopsied, or donating your body for science purposes. The book talks about how America is thriving industry for body parts. Over all this book is a "must read" and makes look twice at funeral, cremation and the whole death pro [...]

    14. This was in interesting read and one of the few books out there on this subject. It did give some intriguing glimpse into the world but it feels like it just grazes the surface of the subject. It doesn't have alot of detailed information and focuses on the sensationalized cases without going in depth about the trade itself beyond the flagrant abuses. The other thing that bothered me is for a non-fiction book it at times read like a fiction book. Detailed descriptions of people as if they are a c [...]

    15. This books gives an amazing inside perspective on donating your body to science. It gives some great information on the underground trade in human remains (even if you don't intend to donate your body). It tells you how hospitals, morgues, and mortuaries get involved in the black market of body parts. Definately a great read if you have considered donating your body. As for me, I want to be cremated so I can avoid these weird things- plus, I don't really want to be embalmed.

    16. This book will really give you the creeps. It is scary to think of what can be going on right under your nose. I know that it doesn't happen everywhere, and Cheney makes it quite clear that not all Funeral Homes, Universities, Hospitals and other institutions don't treat the deceased like this, but just knowing that some are willing to sell your loved ones is scary.

    17. An exposé on the not-so-legal market of bodies and body parts. It turns out there are people selling arms and legs, well, for an arm and a leg, all without the consent of the former owners. However, it'd be a pity if this book stopped people from donating their bodies and/or organs, as there are never enough to meet the demand.

    18. In Body Brokers, Annie Cheney exposes the shadowy world of tissue procurement organizations and the various different people that work within the industry. I really enjoyed this book; it was interesting, well written, and Cheney provides a logical and well structured argument. A must read for anyone planning on donating their body to science.

    19. When speaking of grave robbers people often think of times of patrolling constables and brick streets, but Body Brokers gives a bone chilling into the modern day practice of harvesting and selling body parts. What happens after you die and what you THINK happens after you die may be two different things.

    20. This work of non-fiction is a quick read, but intensely gruesome and horrifying. It will make you look at human death and what happens to bodies afterwards in a whole new light. I found myself having to take breaks for a few deep breaths. It would make one heck of a horror film, and all the more horrible because it's true.

    21. sounds gross but a really interesting look into what could really happen to your body after you die i've been trying to ask my doctor friends if they ever encountered this dark side of the cadaver trade but no one's confirmed any of this yet for me

    22. Beginning with the clever little quote "you are a little soul carrying around a corpse, this was an intriguing, eye-opening, stomach-turning book for me. The Fed-Ex truck may be carrying body parts down the highway Who knew? Definitely glad I plucked it from the library shelf.

    23. It was a very fast and interesting read. I learned and few things and I now know I will not be donating my body to science since the schools just cut you up and sell you for $50,000 or more. It is horrible that the money form the sales of your body parts does not go to the family you left behind.

    24. I really had no clue there were groups that trafficked in body parts and human remains, so this was quite the eye-opener. Today, when orga and tissues transplants are becoming commonplace, this book presents some information worth keeping in mind. Where did they find that new part REALLY?

    25. I have a morbid fascination with this subject in general (though more with old school body snatching than modern incarnations), but this didn't really dig much further than what I already knew. All the same, it was more chilling that I'd been expecting, maybe because it hit closer to home.

    26. disturbing! non-fiction book about people and companies that "broker" corpses, often against people's wishes.

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