David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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NanoEthics 2 (1):15-23 (2008)
With the rapid progress and considerable promise of nanobiotechnology/neurosciences there is the potential of transforming the very nature of human beings and of how humans can conceive of themselves as rational animals through technological innovations. The interface between humans and machines (neuro-digital interface), can potentially alter what it means to be human, i.e., the very idea of human nature and of normal functioning will be changed. In this paper, I argue that we are potentially on the verge of a paradigm shift in terms of the ends and goals of techno-science and its applications in the biomedical sciences. In particular, the development of brain-computer interfaces could reconceptualize the very notion of what it means to be human. Hence, we should not limit our reflections of applications in terms of therapy and enhancement but also include an examination of applications aiming at the alteration of human nature. To this end I will first delineate the potential paradigm shift and then map out four distinct clusters of concerns in relation to the brain-computer interface. Finally, I argue that our moral and philosophical reflections should follow a procedural model based on managed consensus due to our pluralistic context.
|Keywords||Human nature Human enhancement Alteration of human nature Brain–computer interface Procedural ethics|
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Citations of this work BETA
Fabrice Jotterand (2010). Human Dignity and Transhumanism: Do Anthro-Technological Devices Have Moral Status? American Journal of Bioethics 10 (7):45-52.
Céline Kermisch (2012). Do New Ethical Issues Arise at Each Stage of Nanotechnological Development? NanoEthics 6 (1):29-37.
Patrick Grüneberg (2012). From Therapy and Enhancement to Assistive Technologies: An Attempt to Clarify the Role of the Sports Physician. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 6 (4):480-491.
John Z. Sadler, Fabrice Jotterand, Simon Craddock Lee & Stephen Inrig (2009). Can Medicalization Be Good? Situating Medicalization Within Bioethics. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 30 (6):411-425.
Stephen H. Cutcliffe, Christine M. Pense & Michael Zvalaren (2012). Framing the Discussion: Nanotechnology and the Social Construction of Technology--What STS Scholars Are Saying. NanoEthics 6 (2):81-99.
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