Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy

, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp 345–350 | Cite as

Short literature notices

  • Roberto Andorno

Agar, N., 2010. Humanity’s End. Why We Should Reject Radical Enhancement. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 224 pages. ISBN: 978-0262014625. Price: U$S 32

In Humanity’s End, Nicholas Agar challenges proponents of radical enhancement. He argues that some enhancements can be a threat to humanity and therefore should be rejected. For him, radical enhancement could kill us, distort some of our values, and bring a tyranny of posthumans over humans.

In the first two chapters, he defines radical enhancement and introduces the notion of “species-relativism.” Radical enhancements are interventions such as uploading and SENS (strategies for engineered negligible senescence) which can turn us into posthumans. Agar argues that humans should not become posthumans because “certain experiences and ways of existing properly valued by [humans] may lack value for the [posthumans]” (13). Looking at reproduction, he offers a species-relativist argument that posthumans will likely not be able to reproduce with Homo...


Pregnant Woman Global Health Public Health Ethic Radical Enhancement Global Bioethic 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Biomedical EthicsUniversity of ZurichZurichSwitzerland

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