Transhumanism: Roots and Core Themes - Introduction
More (Max) & Vita-More (Natasha)
Source: More & Vita-More - The Transhumanist Reader, Introduction to Part I
Paper - Abstract

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  1. Transhumanism2 developed as a philosophy that became a cultural movement, and now is regarded as a growing field of study. It is often confused with, compared to, and even equated with posthumanism3.
  2. Transhumanism4 arrived during what is often referred to as the postmodernist era, although it has only a modest overlap with postmodernism. Ironically, transhumanism5 shares some postmodernist values, such as a need for change, re-evaluating knowledge, recognition of multiple identities, and opposition to sharp classifications of what humans and humanity ought to be.
  3. Nevertheless, transhumanism6 does not throw out the entirety of the past because of a few mistaken ideas. Humanism and scientific knowledge have proven their quality and value. In this way, transhumanism7 seeks a transmodernity or hypermodernism rather than arguing explicitly against modernism.
  4. One aspect of transhumanism8 that we hope to explore and elucidate throughout this book is the need for inclusivity, plurality, and continuous questioning of our knowledge, as we are a species and a society that is forever changing. The roots and core themes of transhumanism9 address some of the underlying themes that have formed its philosophical outlook.
  5. The first section of the book presents a definitive overview of transhumanism10. Transhumanism11 is a class of philosophies that seeks the continued evolution12 of human life beyond its current human form as a result of science and technology guided by life-promoting principles and values. Transhumanism13 promotes an interdisciplinary approach to understanding and evaluating the opportunities for enhancing the human condition and the human organism opened up by the advancement of technology.

In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1: Chapter summaries have been removed and used as the Abstracts of the Chapters themselves.

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