This volume is the first of a trilogy which investigates, from a broadly realist perspective, the place, and challenges, of the human in contemporary social orders. The authors, all members of the Centre for Social Ontology, ask what is specific about humanity’s nature and worth, and what are their main challenges in contemporary societies?

Examining the ways in which recent advances in technology threaten to blur and displace the boundaries constitutive of our shared humanity, Realist Responses to Post-Human Society: Ex Machina explores the philosophical and ethical questions raised by these developments, and discusses the dangers posed by the combination of transhumanism with post-humanist social theories and antihumanist practices, institutions and ideologies.

chapter 1|9 pages


Post-humanism in morphogenic societies

chapter 2|23 pages

Bodies, persons and human enhancement

Why these distinctions matter

chapter 3|20 pages

Vulcans, Klingons, and humans

What does humanism encompass?

chapter 4|29 pages

Transcending the human

Why, where, and how?

chapter 5|56 pages

Yesterday’s tomorrow today

Turing, Searle and the contested significance of artificial intelligence

chapter 6|27 pages

Trans-human (life-)time

Emergent biographies and the ‘deep change’ in personal reflexivity