Human Enhancement

Baby-Making: The Fractured Fulfillment of Huxley's Brave New World, Part II

We have reviewed the legal and cultural changes that led to widespread use of ART and the creation of thousands of frozen embryos. We have examined the risks and consequences for mothers and their children. We have taken a quick look at some of the social implications. Now, I would like to return to a point I raised in the beginning . . . the Orwellian overtones of some aspects of ART. This is the part that has its rationale in the eugenics of the early 20th century.

Podcast Episode: 
160

Baby-Making: The Fractured Fulfillment of Huxley's Brave New World, Part I

GATTACA is just one of the examples from literature and popular culture that entice us to slow down and think about some of the most serious ethical questions facing us today. Hollywood has given us The Sixth Day on human cloning, The Island on involuntary organ donors, John Q on organ transplantation, and Minority Report on neuroethics, to name just a few. These are joined in literature by works such as C.S. Lewis’ That Hideous Strength and, of course, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.

Sometimes there is an eerie immediacy to the sci-fi futuristic scenarios depicted in these works. Scripts have had to be altered when real-day science threatened to overtake the in-the-future premise of the plot. Meanwhile, the moral conversation, the bioethical reflection, has struggled to keep up. Law and policy lag even farther behind, often feebly attempting to regulate only after a catastrophe or dispute.

Podcast Episode: 
159

Grey Matters: Just Enhancement

As the United States considers how best to restrain the growth of healthcare costs while ensuring quality and access, the potential economic impact of proposals for enhancement medicine should not be overlooked. This essay makes the case that the practice of neuroenhancement, if it were to become widespread, would infringe upon the ethical principle of distributive justice.

Podcast Episode: 
144

The Future of the Human Species (Part 1)

Podcast Episode: 
134

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