Nov 20, 2022

NEW NOW. Transhumanism: beyond the human frontier?

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, education, ethics, health, policy, transhumanism

The fourth discussion of the NEW NOW program, “Transhumanism: Beyond the Human Frontier?”, took place on December 16.

Together with our guest experts, we tried to identify the latest technology that has either already become a reality or is currently in development, focusing on the ethical aspects of the consequences that ensue. We reflected on the question of whether the realization of transhumanist ideas is likely to entail a radical change in the ways people relate to one another. How far are we prepared to go in changing our bodies in order to attain these enhanced capacities? We will attempt to identify the “human frontier”, beyond which the era of posthumanism awaits.


James “J.” Hughes Ph.D. is a bioethicist and sociologist who serves as the Associate Provost for the University of Massachusetts Boston (UMB), and as Senior Research Fellow at UMB’s Center for Applied Ethics. He holds a doctorate in Sociology from the University of Chicago where he taught bioethics at the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics. Since then Dr. Hughes has taught health policy, bioethics, medical sociology and research methods at Northwestern University, the University of Connecticut, and Trinity College.

Timothy Morton is Rita Shea Guffey Chair in English at Rice University. They have collaborated with Laurie Anderson, Björk, Jennifer Walshe, Hrafnhildur Arnadottir, Sabrina Scott, Adam McKay, Jeff Bridges, Olafur Eliasson, Pharrell Williams and Justin Guariglia. Morton co-wrote and appears in Living in the Future’s Past, a 2018 film about global warming with Jeff Bridges. They are the author of the libretto for the opera Time Time Time by Jennifer Walshe.

Eric Schwitzgebel. Most of Professor Eric Schwitzgebel research explores connections between empirical psychology and philosophy of mind, especially the nature of belief, the inaccuracy of our judgments about our stream of conscious experience, and the tenuous relationship between philosophical ethics and actual moral behavior.

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