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To be a Machine: Adventures Among Cyborgs, Utopians, Hackers, and the Futurists Solving the Modest Problem of Death

To be a Machine: Adventures Among Cyborgs, Utopians, Hackers, and the Futurists Solving the Modest Problem of Death (Paperback)

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Synopsis





What is transhumanism? Simply put, it is a movement whose aim is to use technology to fundamentally change the human condition, to improve our bodies and minds to the point where we become something other, and better, than the animals we are. It's a philosophy that, depending on how you look at it, can seem hopeful, or terrifying, or absurd. In To Be a Machine, Mark O'Connell presents us with the first full-length exploration of transhumanism: its philosophical and scientific roots, its key players and possible futures. From charismatic techies seeking to enhance the body to immortalists who believe in the possibility of 'solving' death; from computer programmers quietly re-designing the world to vast competitive robotics conventions; To Be a Machine is an Adventure in Wonderland for our time. To Be a Machine paints a vivid portrait of an international movement driven by strange and frequently disturbing ideas and practices, but whose obsession with transcending human limitations can be seen as a kind of cultural microcosm, a radical intensification of our broader faith in the power of technology as an engine of human progress. It is a character study of human eccentricity, and a meditation on the immemorial desire to transcend the basic facts of our animal existence - a desire as primal as the oldest religions, a story as old as the earliest literary texts. A stunning new non-fiction voice tackles an urgent question...what next for mankind?



MARK O'CONNELL is a journalist, essayist, and literary critic from Dublin. He is a books columnist for Slate, a staff writer at The Millions, and a regular contributor to the New Yorker's 'Page-Turner' blog and the Dublin Review; his work has been published in the New York Times Magazine, the New York Times Book Review, and the Observer.

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Staff Choice

Join journalist Mark O'Connell on this hilarious, philosophical, and very human journey into transhumanism — a movement to augment or replace people with machines — meeting en route the man who runs a cryogenics lab, the biohackers using unlicensed surgery to insert tech into their bodies, and the presidential candidate driving across the States in a giant coffin, accompanied by a man who's saving himself for sexbots. A rare tech book that argues for human beings as more than the data they divulge, O'Connell asks what might really be motivating this desire to become machine — and his scintillating prose will send you hunting down every piece he's ever written.

Gavin, Marketing Team

Charing Cross Rd Bookshop - 05/04/2017

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Location 1st Book Each additional book Average Delivery Time
UK Second Class Available free for ALL orders. No charge for each additional book. 3-7 Days
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