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Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies

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Personhood Beyond the Human: Linda Glenn on Extending the Boundaries Internationally

January 28, 2014

On December 8, 2013 Linda MacDonald Glenn and Dr. Jeanann S. Boyce spoke on “Person of Interest: Extending the Boundaries Internationally” at the Personhood Beyond the Human conference at Yale University.

Steve Fuller is Auguste Comte Professor of Social Epistemology in the Department of Sociology at the University of Warwick, UK. Originally trained in history and philosophy of science, Fuller is best known for his foundational work in the field of ‘social epistemology’, which is concerned with the normative grounds of organized inquiry. ‘Social epistemology’ is also the name of a quarterly journal that he founded in 1987 as well as the first of his twenty books. He has most recently authored a trilogy relating to the idea of a ‘post-’ or ‘trans-’ human future, all published with Palgrave Macmillan: Humanity 2.0: What It Means to Be Human Past, Present and Future (2011), Preparing for Life in Humanity 2.0 (2012) and (with Veronika Lipinska) The Proactionary Imperative: A Foundation for Transhumanism (2013).

The Personhood Beyond the Human conference was organized by the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, the Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics at Yale University, Yale’s Animal Ethics Group and Yale’s Technology and Ethics Group.

Abstract: The purpose of this presentation is to extend the traditional models of personhood, which have included definitions of proportional autonomy, privacy, and culpability to non-humans, as well as humans.

UN Declaration of Human Rights was adopted in 1948 and not all countries have adopted it as a universal standard. In the west, we have the concept of ‘inalienable rights’; in other parts of the world, we are still struggling with basic rights, with women, children and animals still being considered property. Should we be advocating adoption of universal laws and universal courts, that would extend human rights to human law, to include a broader spectrum of sentient beings?



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