More than 200 real, preserved human specimens will be on display at COSI, and one group says that they should never see the light of day.
Lucia Dunn, a professor of economics, at The Ohio State University, said that many of the bodies on display at COSI’s Gunther von Hagens’ BODY WORLDS & The Brain exhibit have origins in China.
Dunn said that many of the bodies come from cadaver factories, believed to be the bodies of executed prisoners and religious dissidents.
“The bodies at COSI, we’re assured now, come with documentation,” Dunn said. “But the fact is, no particular body is ever publicly identified with any donation document. They say it’s out of privacy concerns, but you see, we can’t be sure.’
Dunn said that the exhibit also violates the views of many of her Chinese students, who have strong beliefs about the say a deceased human body should be treated.
“One young Chinese woman came in, looked at some of the pictures online and frankly burst into tears and just said, ‘Oh my goodness, how horrible! How can they do this?’” Dunn said.
COSI officials said that the bodies on display through Jan. 6 came from donors.
“People who felt very strongly that it was important to donate their body for this purpose and for the purposes of science,” said Jaclyn Reynolds of COSI.
Reynolds said that officials have reached out to several local religious and civic groups and received near unanimous support for the exhibit.
The group associated with OSU said that it has organized a formal protest of the COSI exhibit for Sunday.
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