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  1. Can ‘Eugenics’ Be Defended?Francesca Minerva, Diana S. Fleischman, Peter Singer, Nicholas Agar, Jonathan Anomaly & Walter Veit - 2021 - Monash Bioethics Review 39 (1):60-67.
  2.  41
    Humanity’s End: Why We Should Reject Radical Enhancement.Nicholas Agar - 2010 - Bradford.
    Proposals to make us smarter than the greatest geniuses or to add thousands of years to our life spans seem fit only for the spam folder or trash can. And yet this is what contemporary advocates of radical enhancement offer in all seriousness. They present a variety of technologies and therapies that will expand our capacities far beyond what is currently possible for human beings. In _Humanity's End,_ Nicholas Agar argues against radical enhancement, describing its destructive consequences. Agar examines the (...)
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  3. Liberal Eugenics: In Defence of Human Enhancement.Nicholas Agar - 2004 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    In this provocative book, philosopher Nicholas Agar defends the idea that parents should be allowed to enhance their children’s characteristics. Gets away from fears of a Huxleyan ‘Brave New World’ or a return to the fascist eugenics of the past Written from a philosophically and scientifically informed point of view Considers real contemporary cases of parents choosing what kind of child to have Uses ‘moral images’ as a way to get readers with no background in philosophy to think about moral (...)
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  4.  59
    Humanity's End: Why We Should Reject Radical Enhancement.Nicholas Agar - 2013 - Bradford.
    Proposals to make us smarter than the greatest geniuses or to add thousands of years to our life spans seem fit only for the spam folder or trash can. And yet this is what contemporary advocates of radical enhancement offer in all seriousness. They present a variety of technologies and therapies that will expand our capacities far beyond what is currently possible for human beings. In _Humanity's End,_ Nicholas Agar argues against radical enhancement, describing its destructive consequences. Agar examines the (...)
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  5.  59
    Truly Human Enhancement: A Philosophical Defense of Limits.Nicholas Agar - 2013 - MIT Press.
    Nicholas Agar offers a more nuanced view of the transformative potential of genetic and cybernetic technologies, making a case for moderate human enhancement—improvements to attributes and abilities that do not significantly exceed what ...
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  6.  10
    Liberal Eugenics: In Defence of Human Enhancement.Nicholas Agar - 2004 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    In this provocative book, philosopher Nicholas Agar defends the idea that parents should be allowed to enhance their children’s characteristics. Gets away from fears of a Huxleyan ‘Brave New World’ or a return to the fascist eugenics of the past Written from a philosophically and scientifically informed point of view Considers real contemporary cases of parents choosing what kind of child to have Uses ‘moral images’ as a way to get readers with no background in philosophy to think about moral (...)
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  7.  63
    Why We Should Defend Gene Editing as Eugenics.Nicholas Agar - 2019 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 28 (1):9-19.
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  8.  76
    Why is It Possible to Enhance Moral Status and Why Doing so is Wrong?Nicholas Agar - 2013 - Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (2):67-74.
    This paper presents arguments for two claims. First, post-persons, beings with a moral status superior to that of mere persons, are possible. Second, it would be bad to create such beings. Actions that risk bringing them into existence should be avoided. According to Allen Buchanan, it is possible to enhance moral status up to the level of personhood. But attempts to improve status beyond that fail for want of a target - there is no category of moral status superior to (...)
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  9.  74
    Moral Bioenhancement is Dangerous.Nicholas Agar - 2015 - Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (4):343-345.
  10.  55
    How to Treat Machines That Might Have Minds.Nicholas Agar - 2020 - Philosophy and Technology 33 (2):269-282.
    This paper offers practical advice about how to interact with machines that we have reason to believe could have minds. I argue that we should approach these interactions by assigning credences to judgements about whether the machines in question can think. We should treat the premises of philosophical arguments about whether these machines can think as offering evidence that may increase or reduce these credences. I describe two cases in which you should refrain from doing as your favored philosophical view (...)
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  11. What Do Frogs Really Believe?Nicholas Agar - 1993 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 71 (1):1-12.
  12.  56
    Liberal Eugenics.Nicholas Agar - 1998 - Public Affairs Quarterly 12 (2):137-155.
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  13.  47
    A Question About Defining Moral Bioenhancement.Nicholas Agar - 2014 - Journal of Medical Ethics 40 (6):369-370.
    David DeGrazia1 offers, to my mind, a decisive response to the bioconservative suggestion that moral bioenhancement threatens human freedom or undermines its value. In this brief commentary, I take issue with DeGrazia's way of defining MB. A different concept of MB exposes a danger missed by his analysis.Two ways to define MBDeGrazia presents MB as a form of enhancement directed at moral capacities. There are, in the philosophical literature, two broad approaches to defining human enhancement. Simplifying somewhat, one account identifies (...)
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  14. Life's Intrinsic Value: Science, Ethics, and Nature.Nicholas Agar - 2001 - Columbia University Press.
    Are bacteriophage T4 and the long-nosed elephant fish valuable in their own right? Nicholas Agar defends an affirmative answer to this question by arguing that anything living is intrinsically valuable. This claim challenges received ethical wisdom according to which only human beings are valuable in themselves. The resulting biocentric or life-centered morality forms the platform for an ethic of the environment. -/- Agar builds a bridge between the biological sciences and what he calls "folk" morality to arrive at a workable (...)
     
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  15.  19
    Re-Defining Moral Distress: A Systematic Review and Critical Re-Appraisal of the Argument-Based Bioethics Literature.Christine Sanderson, Linda Sheahan, Slavica Kochovska, Tim Luckett, Deborah Parker, Phyllis Butow & Meera Agar - 2019 - Clinical Ethics 14 (4):195-210.
    The concept of moral distress comes from nursing ethics, and was initially defined as ‘…when one knows the right thing to do, but institutional constraints make it nearly impossible to pursue the right course of action’. There is a large body of literature associated with moral distress, yet multiple definitions now exist, significantly limiting its usefulness. We undertook a systematic review of the argument-based bioethics literature on this topic as the basis for a critical appraisal, identifying 55 papers for analysis. (...)
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  16.  3
    The Sceptical Optimist: Why Technology Isn't the Answer to Everything.Nicholas Agar - 2015 - Oxford University Press UK.
    The rapid developments in technologies -- especially computing and the advent of many 'smart' devices, as well as rapid and perpetual communication via the Internet -- has led to a frequently voiced view which Nicholas Agar describes as 'radical optimism'. Radical optimists claim that accelerating technical progress will soon end poverty, disease, and ignorance, and improve our happiness and well-being. Agar disputes the claim that technological progress will automatically produce great improvements in subjective well-being. He argues that radical optimism 'assigns (...)
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  17.  22
    A Contribution to the Theory of the Living Organism.Wilfred Eade Agar - 1943 - Melbourne, Melbourne University Press in Association with Oxford University Press.
    Originally published in 1913. Author: Henri Lichtenberger Language: English Keywords: History Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. Obscure Press are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.Keywords: English Keywords 1900s Language English Artwork.
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  18.  25
    We Should Eliminate the Concept of Disease From Mental Health.Nicholas Agar - 2019 - Journal of Medical Ethics 45 (9):591-591.
    Russell Powell and Eric Scarffe1 are pluralists about disease. They offer their thickly normative account to meet the needs of doctors, but they allow that a different concept of disease might work better for zoologists. In this commentary, I grant that Powell and Scarffe’s thickly normative evaluation of biological dysfunction works well in many medicinal contexts. Powell and Scarffe respond effectively to eliminativists—we should retain the concept of disease. But the paper’s pluralism and focus on the specific needs of institutions (...)
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  19. Whereto Transhumanism? The Literature Reaches a Critical Mass.Nicholas Agar - 2007 - Hastings Center Report 37 (3):12-17.
  20. On the Irrationality of Mind-Uploading: A Rely to Neil Levy. [REVIEW]Nicholas Agar - 2012 - AI and Society 27 (4):431-436.
    In a paper in this journal, Neil Levy challenges Nicholas Agar’s argument for the irrationality of mind-uploading. Mind-uploading is a futuristic process that involves scanning brains and recording relevant information which is then transferred into a computer. Its advocates suppose that mind-uploading transfers both human minds and identities from biological brains into computers. According to Agar’s original argument, mind-uploading is prudentially irrational. Success relies on the soundness of the program of Strong AI—the view that it may someday be possible to (...)
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  21.  78
    Biocentrism and the Concept of Life.Nicholas Agar - 1997 - Ethics 108 (1):147-168.
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  22.  51
    Moral Bioenhancement and the Utilitarian Catastrophe.Nicholas Agar - 2015 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 24 (1):37-47.
  23.  5
    Crystallinity Effects in the Electron Microscopy of Polyethylene.A. W. Agar, F. C. Prank & A. Keller - 1959 - Philosophical Magazine 4 (37):32-55.
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  24.  35
    Still Afraid of Needy Post-Persons.Nicholas Agar - 2013 - Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (2):81-83.
    I want to thank all of those who have commented on my article in the Journal of Medical Ethics.1 The commentaries address a wide cross-section of the issues raised in my article. I have organised my responses thematically.The state of playAllen Buchanan's scepticism2 about moral statuses higher than personhood derives, in part, from our apparent inability to describe them. We seem to have little difficulty in imagining what it might be to have scientific understanding far beyond that of any human (...)
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  25.  23
    Transformative Change in Invasion of the Body Snatchers.Nicholas Agar - 2018 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 21 (3):279-286.
    Transformation is a memorable feature of some of the most iconic works of science fiction. These works feature characters who begin as humans and change into radically different kinds of being. This paper examines transformative change in the context of the Invasion of the Body Snatchers movies. I discuss how humans should approach the prospect of being body snatched. I argue that we shouldn’t welcome the transformation even if we are convinced that we will have very positive experiences as pod (...)
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  26. Designing Babies: Morally Permissible Ways to Modify the Human Genome1.Nicholas Agar - 1995 - Bioethics 9 (1):1-15.
    My focus in this paper is the question of the moral acceptability of attempts to modify the human genome. Much of the debate in this area has revolved around the distinction between supposedly therapeutic modification on the one hand, and eugenic modification on the other. In the first part of the paper I reject some recent arguments against genetic engineering. In the second part I seek to distinguish between permissible and impermissible forms of intervention in such a way that does (...)
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  27.  15
    Διήφυσε.T. L. Agar - 1897 - The Classical Review 11 (09):445-447.
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  28.  36
    We Must Not Create Beings with Moral Standing Superior to Our Own.Nicholas Agar - 2013 - Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (11):709-709.
    Ingmar Persson challenges1 an argument in my book Humanity's End: Why We Should Reject Radical Enhancement2 that harms predictably suffered by unenhanced humans justify banning radical enhancement. Here I understand radical enhancement as producing beings with mental and physical capacities that greatly exceed those of the most capable current human. I called these results of radical enhancement posthumans, though I think that Persson may be right that this is not the most felicitous name for them.The focus of my argument was (...)
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  29. Functionalism and Personal Identity.Nicholas Agar - 2003 - Noûs 37 (1):52-70.
    Sydney Shoemaker has claimed that functionalism, a theory\nabout mental states, implies a certain theory about the\nidentity over time of persons, the entities that have\nmental states. He also claims that persons can survive a\n"Brain-State-Transfer" procedure. My examination of these\nclaims includes description and analysis of imaginary\ncases, but--notably--not appeals to our "intuitions"\nconcerning them. It turns out that Shoemaker's basic\ninsight is correct. But there is no implication that it is\nnecessary. (edited).
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  30. Don't Worry About Superintelligence.Nicholas Agar - 2016 - Journal of Evolution and Technology 26 (1):73-82.
    This paper responds to Nick Bostrom’s suggestion that the threat of a human-unfriendly superintelligenceshould lead us to delay or rethink progress in AI. I allow that progress in AI presents problems that we are currently unable to solve. However; we should distinguish between currently unsolved problems for which there are rational expectations of solutions and currently unsolved problems for which no such expectation is appropriate. The problem of a human-unfriendly superintelligence belongs to the first category. It is rational to proceed (...)
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  31.  16
    A Contribution to the Theory of the Living Organism.James W. Papez & W. E. Agar - 1945 - Philosophical Review 54 (3):274.
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  32.  57
    Valuing Species and Valuing Individuals.Nicholas Agar - 1995 - Environmental Ethics 17 (4):397-415.
    My goal in this paper is to account for the value of species in terms of the value of individual organisms that make them up. Many authors have pointed to an apparent conflict between a species preservationist ethic and moral theories that place value on individuals. I argue for an account of the worth of individual organisms grounded in the representational goals of those organisms. I claim thatthis account leads to an acceptably extensive species preservationist ethic.
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  33.  53
    Embryonic Potential and Stem Cells.Nicholas Agar - 2007 - Bioethics 21 (4):198–207.
  34. Cloning and Identity.Nicholas Agar - 2003 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 28 (1):9 – 26.
    Critics of human cloning allege that the results of the process are likely to suffer from compromised identities making it near impossible for them to live worthwhile lives. This paper uses the account of the metaphysics of personal identity offered by Derek Parfit to investigate and support the claim of identity-compromise. The cloned person may, under certain circumstances, be seen as surviving, to some degree, in the clone. However, I argue that rather than warranting concern, the potential for survival by (...)
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  35.  4
    Evolutionary Naturalism. [REVIEW]Nicholas Agar - 1999 - Mind 108 (430):401-405.
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  36.  15
    Drugmart: Heroin Epidemics as Complex Adaptive Systems.Michael H. Agar & Dwight Wilson - 2002 - Complexity 7 (5):44-52.
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  37.  10
    How to Insure Against Utilitarian Overconfidence.Nicholas Agar - 2014 - Monash Bioethics Review 32 (3-4):162-171.
    This paper addresses two examples of overconfident presentations of utilitarian moral conclusions. First, there is Peter Singer’s widely discussed claim that if the consequences of a medical experiment are sufficiently good to justify the use of animals, then we should be prepared to perform the experiment on human beings with equivalent mental capacities. Second, I consider defences of infanticide or after-birth abortion. I do not challenge the soundness of these arguments. Rather, I accuse those who seek to translate these conclusions (...)
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  38.  10
    Self-Mourning in Paradise: Writing (About) AIDS Through Death-Bed Delirium.James N. Agar - 2007 - Paragraph 30 (1):67-84.
    This article discusses the representation of AIDS in Guibert's posthumously published novel Le Paradis. The novel is situated in relation to Guibert's better known previous AIDS writings. The article proposes that Guibert's AIDS works fall in to three related categories: writings about other peoples' AIDS; autobiographical writings about AIDS, and, in the third, terminal stage in which Le Paradis fits, writing AIDS. As such the article suggests that Le Paradis manages to reflect and communicate some of the trauma of living (...)
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  39.  46
    Why We Can't Really Say What Post-Persons Are.Nicholas Agar - 2012 - Journal of Medical Ethics 38 (3):144-145.
  40.  22
    We Have Met the Other and We 'Re All Nonlinear: Ethnography as a Nonlinear Dynamic System'.Michael Agar - 2004 - Complexity 10 (2):16-24.
  41.  6
    Hermeneutics in Anthropology: A Review Essay.Michael Agar - 1980 - Ethos: Journal of the Society for Psychological Anthropology 8 (3):253-272.
  42.  14
    Sport, Simulation, and EPO.Nicholas Agar - 2011 - In Gregory E. Kaebnick (ed.), The Ideal of Nature: Debates About Biotechnology and the Environment. Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 149.
  43.  9
    Valuing Species and Valuing Individuals.Nicholas Agar - 1995 - Environmental Ethics 17 (4):397-415.
    My goal in this paper is to account for the value of species in terms of the value of individual organisms that make them up. Many authors have pointed to an apparent conflict between a species preservationist ethic and moral theories that place value on individuals. I argue for an account of the worth of individual organisms grounded in the representational goals of those organisms. I claim thatthis account leads to an acceptably extensive species preservationist ethic.
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  44.  9
    Hermeneutics in Anthropology: Interpretive Social Science: A Reader. Paul Rabinow, William M. Sullivan. ; The Said and the Unsaid: Mind, Meaning and Culture. Stephen R. Tyler. [REVIEW]Michael Agar - 1980 - Ethos: Journal of the Society for Psychological Anthropology 8 (3):253-272.
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  45.  62
    The Ethics of Killing: Problems at the Margins of Life.N. Agar - 2003 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 81 (3):445 – 447.
    Book Information The Ethics of Killing: Problems at the Margins of Life. By Jeff McMahan. Oxford University Press. New York. 2002. Pp. xiii + 540. Aus$110.
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  46.  33
    Teleogy and Genes.Nicholas Agar - 1996 - Biology and Philosophy 11 (3):289-300.
    My aim in this paper is to quickly sketch a teleological approach to the problem of isolating the impact of genes on phenotypic characters. I begin by arguing that it is a mistake to think that there will be only one analysis of genetic input suitable for all theoretical interests. My principle focus is Richard Dawkins' argument for genic selectionism. I argue that a teleological analysis of genetic input is what Dawkins requires to establish the right kind of mapping of (...)
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  47.  1
    Beyond Evolution: Human Nature and the Limits of Evolutionary Explanation.N. Agar - 2001 - Mind 110 (438):534-537.
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  48.  14
    Aeschylus, Agamemnon 1–8.T. L. Agar - 1924 - Classical Quarterly 18 (3-4):163-.
    As is well known, many editors, following Valckenaer, reject the bracketed line altogether; but the omission leaves the opening clause with a very unsatisfactory ending. μπρέποντας αίθέρι, heavily stressed by its position, seems to form little less than an anticlimax, unless we assume that the stars could hardly be expected to shine in the sky. On the other hand, when line 7 is added, έμπρέποντας αίθέρ στέρας brings out clearly the fact that only certain conspicuous stars or constellations are meant—those (...)
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  49.  10
    Atsushi Akera. Calculating a Natural World: Scientists, Engineers, and Computers During the Rise of U.S. Cold War Research. Ix + 427 Pp., Illus., Bibl., Index. Cambridge, Mass./London: MIT Press, 2007. $40. [REVIEW]Jon Agar - 2008 - Isis 99 (3):646-647.
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  50.  7
    Alexander C.T. Geppert , Imagining Outer Space: European Astroculture in the Twentieth Century. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012. Pp. Xvii+393. ISBN 978-0-230-23172-6. £70.00. [REVIEW]Jon Agar - 2013 - British Journal for the History of Science 46 (2):352-354.
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