Human Nature and Respect for the Evolutionarily Given: a Comment on Lewens

Philosophy and Technology 25 (4):485-493 (2012)

Authors
Russell Powell
Boston University
Abstract
Any serious ethical discussion of the enhancement of human nature must begin with a reasonably accurate picture of the causal-historical structure of the living world. In this Comment, I show that even biologically sophisticated ethical discussions of the biomedical enhancement of species and speciel natures are susceptible to the kind of essentialistic thinking that Lewens cautions against. Furthermore, I argue that the same evolutionary and developmental considerations that compel Lewens to reject more plausible conceptions of human nature pose equally serious problems for some prominent critiques of biomedical enhancement that presuppose the existence of a “given” biological potential that can be distorted by agentic cultural influences
Keywords Enhancement  Genetic engineering  Human nature  Lewens  Sandel  Species
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1007/s13347-012-0090-7
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 47,122
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

A Matter of Individuality.David L. Hull - 1978 - Philosophy of Science 45 (3):335-360.
Evolution, Population Thinking, and Essentialism.Elliott Sober - 1980 - Philosophy of Science 47 (3):350-383.

View all 13 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Why Should We Become Posthuman? The Beneficence Argument Questioned.Andrés Pablo Vaccari - 2019 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 44 (2):192-219.
Bridging Bioethics and Biology.Sune Holm - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 55:133-136.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Human Nature: The Very Idea.Tim Lewens - 2012 - Philosophy and Technology 25 (4):459-474.
Enhancement and Human Nature: The Case of Sandel.T. Lewens - 2009 - Journal of Medical Ethics 35 (6):354-356.
Reconceptualizing Human Nature: Response to Lewens. [REVIEW]Edouard Machery - 2012 - Philosophy and Technology 25 (4):475-478.
Genetic Enhancement, Human Nature, and Rights.T. Mcconnell - 2010 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 35 (4):415-428.
Human Nature and Enhancement.Allen Buchanan - 2009 - Bioethics 23 (3):141-150.
Is There a Problem with Enhancement?Frances M. Kamm - 2005 - American Journal of Bioethics 5 (3):5 – 14.
Can Human Genetic Enhancement Be Prohibited?William Gardner - 1995 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 20 (1):65-84.
Is Human Enhancement Also a Personal Matter?Vincent Menuz, Thierry Hurlimann & Béatrice Godard - 2013 - Science and Engineering Ethics 19 (1):161-177.
The Wisdom of Nature: An Evolutionary Heuristic for Human Enhancement.Nick Bostrom & Anders Sandberg - 2009 - In Julian Savulescu & Nick Bostrom (eds.), Human Enhancement. Oxford University Press. pp. 375--416.
Mastery Without Mystery: Why There is No Promethean Sin in Enhancement.Guy Kahane - 2011 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 28 (4):355-368.
Genetic Enhancement and Moral Attitudes Toward the Given.Terrance Mcconnell - 2011 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 28 (4):369-380.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2012-11-07

Total views
45 ( #200,404 of 2,289,307 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #589,325 of 2,289,307 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature