So our final judgment on "what’s wrong" with Huxley’s brave .. Excerpted from OUR POSTHUMAN FUTURE by Francis Fukuyama. Francis Fukuyama’s Our Posthuman Future fears that biotechnology will make monsters of us. Steven Rose weighs the evidence. The power to genetically enhance future generations could be a boon for humanity – or it could lead to an era of violent rebellion against the.

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Is a natural aristocracy of over intelligent, over beautiful people going to emerge? Indeed, his subsequent and perhaps accidental praise of civic control of pharmacology and agricultural biotechnology leave the fikuyama thinking, “Gee, maybe human rights ARE whatever we agree they are,” thereby supporting what he wants us to reject.

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Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution

Try the Kindle edition and experience these great reading features: Conclusive proof that the Flying Spaghetti Monster doesn’t exist, and we can quit worshipping Him. Huxley suggests that one source for a definition of what it meansto be a human being is religion.

Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolutionor, The Franciis of Historyhis earlier book, and then starts chiseling away at definitions so as to say, in effect, “Oh, I didn’t George Ace, a crusty old dairy farmer I once knew, had an expression: Fukuyama sketches a brief history of man’s changing understanding The whole vision of the future, when ‘cloning’ was quite a new subject at school and I was barely familiar with it.

Francis Fukuyama was born in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. The pleasure we derive from reading a trashy pulp fiction novel is different from the pleasure of reading ‘War and Peace’ or ‘Madame Bovary’ with the benefit of life experience of the sort that these latter novels address.

This section covers a lot of ground: The aim of this book is to inform policy makers about the fikuyama of building institutions to remedy potential negative results of biotechnological innovations that have a big impact on human lives.

Review: Our Posthuman Future by Francis Fukuyama | Books | The Guardian

Ultimately, he argues for strong international regulation of human biotechnology and thoughtfully disposes of the most compelling counterarguments. Even in today’s world, when all people are fundamentally equal, we have a difficult time creating societies that walk out that equality without allotting prejudice and privilege along the lines of trivial physical and economic differences.

This was the section I found the most interesting because it illustrated the type of hoops you have to jump through to make an egalitarian case for the intrinsic value of all human life when you start with the presumption of philosophical naturalism.


A new trade of bioethics has grown up around such prospects, providing gainful, albeit generally vacuous, employment to otherwise out-of-work moral philosophers. While Fukuyama correctly illustrates the “easy fixes” that our society has latched onto Prozac, Ritilin: It could be one in which the median person is living well into his or her second century, sitting in a nursing home hoping for an unattainable death.

The deregulation thing, well, if anyone wants to call me on that then I’ll explain myself further maybe, I’m awfully lazy. In this book Fukuyama does imagine it and makes many suggestion on how to prepare ourselves. Whether or not one accepts Fukuyama’s overall argument, his practical recommendations may well hold out the best prospect for promoting a reasonable balance between a rapidly evolving field of science and the moral views of the American people.

It may be satisfactory for self-indulging snobs who want to invoke Plato and Kant in favor of very simple ideological points, but it falls short in establishing a coherent liberal framework in which these innovations make sense. Fukuyama persuasively argues that the ultimate prize of the biotechnology revolution-intervention in the “germ-line,” the ability to manipulate the DNA of all of one person’s descendents-will have profound, and potentially terrible, consequences for our political order, even if undertaken by ordinary parents seeking to “improve” their children.

Books by Francis Fukuyama.

This is one of its strengths. The second school, represented by and perhaps culminating in Jefferson and the Declaration of Independence, says human rights come from human nature, though Fukuyama gets remarkably fuzzy when trying to link this human nature to genetics. This means that social elites may not just pass posthyman social advantages but embed them genetically as well.

Francis Fukuyama argues that informed discussion of human rights posthumqn understanding of human purposes, which themselves rest on a concept of human nature and human dignity. The trouble is, it takes him pages to get to the point, although it’s a fascinating detour through francsi Philosophy Hall of Fame: There are no fixed human characteristics, except for a general capability to choose what we want to be, to modify ourselves in accordance with our desires.

It is rare for me to be simply horrified at a book. Besides being interesting and clear, the book is also very well written, so that the reader must not struggle with the writing to get at the heart of the point, and the length is also just right. George Ace, a crusty old dairy farmer Ourr once knew, had an expression: Open Preview See a Problem?

Huntington and Harvey C. Until now, the left has on the whole been opposed to cloning, genetic engineering and oir biotechnologies for a number of reasons, including traditional humanism, environmental concerns, suspicion of technology and of the corporations that produce it, and fear of eugenics.


Feb 15, Alan rated it it was ok. Fukuyama begs us to return, please, the “human nature equals human rights” school of thought, while continually failing to close the deal intellectually as to posthumqn human nature automatically gets us to human rights or even defining human nature in a way that solidifies his argument. This is a really great book if you can get past the first chapter or so, which is pretty dense.

Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution by Francis Fukuyama

Top Reviews Most recent Top Reviews. I’m an undergraduate student witha a double major: If this all sounds a little rarefied for some tastes, the genius of “Our Posthuman Future” is that it brings home just how important it will be in our immediate future for people like you and me to explore such questions.

Fukuyama defines human nature as “the frxncis of the behavior and characteristics that are typical of the human species, arising from genetics rather than environmental factors. He claims that science, particularly genome studies, offers radical changes, possibly more profound than anything since the development of language, in the way we think about human nature. Higher education Francis Fukuyama. Who said freedom to choose would mean wise choices?

Stanford’s Paul Erlich, always good for a laugh he was priceless in the pompous-yet-totally-mistaken-windbag role in Lomborg’s “Skeptical Environmentalist” shows yet again that common kur is quite uncommon in academia.

Don’t mess with human nature…

With Fukuyama’s move into this territory, it may be that bioethicists are going to be upstaged by political economists. If that assertion sounds self-evident, it’s not.

Thankfully many endnotes list only source notes, however they have the added feature that the endnote pages, rather than simply showing the number of the chapter they refer to, instead display the actual name of the chapter, making things so much easier on the reader, because every page he is reading has the chapter name along fukuyma top of it. His main point is that current society dislikes gender-specific behaviours, and therefore attempts to use drugs to generate an androgynous conformity.

But once the possibility of bio-medical enhancement is realised, it is hard to see how growing genetic inequality could fail to become one of the posthiman controversies of 21st-century politics.