After causing a storm with his controversial Body World exhibition featuring ‘plastinated’ bodies, Gunther von Hagens is now selling the body parts online. The German anatomist says he will only be selling to people who can prove they want the parts for teaching or research. A whole body would cost around 70,000 euros.
Von Hagens is not put off by all the uproar:
“In America, I’m seen as a respected scientist – I get prizes and awards. But in Germany, I’m not mainstream, I’m a newcomer.”
The online shop has outraged members of Germany’s religious community, who have condemned the sales, calling them ‘another level of perversion’ and accusing von Hagens of breaking a taboo. Protestant Bishop, Ulrich Fischer said:
“The dignity of a human being doesn’t end with death. If after their death, their body is treated like an object, a person’s dignity is fundamentally questioned.”
Von Hagens keeps the parts at his Plastinarium company in the east German town of Guben. His method of plastination involves replacing the water and fat in the bodies with plastic, which helps to preserve them.