Whitehead’s Organic Conception of Humanity. Beyond Mechanistic Philosophy in an Age of Transhumanism

Human Affairs 33 (2):250-262 (2023)
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There are several conceptions of man in the history of philosophy. However, two considerable tendencies are recurring throughout modern history. A human being can be perceived as a complex mechanism or as a living organism. The response to the query has essential consequences in different areas. The article aims to provide a view of humankind that builds upon an organic conception of life, nature, and human beings, especially as elaborated by A. N. Whitehead and some of his followers. The article also briefly examines the emergence and development of a mechanistic view. The historical overview exposes the close relationship between the worldview of a given era and the understanding of man. Finally, the article argues that the organic conceptions of life developed in the first half of the 20th century provide an essential alternative to mechanistic views and could help us to deal with several problems we are currently encountering.

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Stefan Zolcer
Comenius University


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