Sunday, October 20, 2013

"Polytechnic utiliversity" (Hütter)

"In the current situation, as far as I can see, one could make a case that the faculties of the secular university are divided roughly along the lines of the Kantian antinomy between determinism and freedom. Predictably, the proponents of determinism are by and large at home in the hard sciences, the defenders of freedom by and large in the humanities.
"The proponents of determinism are increasingly embracing a posthumanist outlook (especially in the biological sciences) in that they see the human being as a highly developed animal bent on maximizing the success of its species (an endeavor driven primarily by the study and technical application of the natural sciences). The proponents of freedom are increasingly embracing a transhumanist outlook by epitomizing freedom in the existentialist sense of freely designing one’s own essence with the assistance of biotech­nology. Thus, human beings become their own designer choices. Human nature is subjected to techne, a Promethean liberation from our own nature—an exercise of a most radical freedom.
"And here the extremes meet. For transhumanism is nothing but the most consistent instantiation of posthumanism, especially when the design is collectively applied and socially enforced. . . . It is a dire picture, which also Aldous Huxley, in Brave New World, Hans Jonas in The Imperative of Responsibility, Jürgen Habermas in The Future of Human Nature, and Pope John Paul II in his encyclical Evangelium Vitae have warned against."

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