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James Hughes [14]James J. Hughes [4]
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James J. Hughes
University of Massachusetts, Boston
  1. Postgenderism: Beyond the Gender Binary.James J. Hughes & George Dvorsky - 2008 - Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies.
    Postgenderism is an extrapolation of ways that technology is eroding the biological, psychological and social role of gender, and an argument for why the erosion of binary gender will be liberatory. Postgenderists argue that gender is an arbitrary and unnecessary limitation on human potential, and foresee the elimination of involuntary biological and psychological gendering in the human species through the application of neurotechnology, biotechnology and reproductive technologies. Postgenderists contend that dyadic gender roles and sexual dimorphisms are generally to the detriment (...)
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  2. Transhumanism and Personal Identity.James Hughes - 2013 - In The Transhumanist Reader. pp. 227=234.
    Enlightenment values are built around the presumption of an independent rational self, citizen, consumer and pursuer of self-interest. Even the authoritarian and communitarian variants of the Enlightenment presumed the existence of autonomous individuals, simply arguing for greater weight to be given to their collective interests. Since Hume, however, radical Enlightenment empiricists have called into question the existence of a discrete, persistent self. Today neuroscientific reductionism has contributed to the rejection of an essentialist model of personal identity. Contemporary transhumanism has yet (...)
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  3. Technoprogressive Biopolitics and Human Enhancement.James Hughes - 2010 - In Jonathan D. Moreno & Sam Berger (eds.), Progress in Bioethics: Science, Policy, and Politics. MIT Press.
    A principal challenge facing the progressive bioethics project is the crafting of a consistent message on biopolitical issues that divide progressives. -/- The regulation of enhancement technologies is one of the issues central to this emerging biopolitics, pitting progressive defenders of enhancement, “technoprogressives,” against progressive critics. This essay [PDF] will argue that technoprogressive biopolitics express the consistent application of the core progressive values of the Enlightenment: the right of individuals to control their own bodies, brains and reproduction according to their (...)
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  4. The Future of Death: Cryonics and the Telos of Liberal Individualism.James Hughes - 2001 - Journal of Evolution and Technology 6 (1).
    This paper addresses five questions: First, what is trajectory of Western liberal ethics and politics in defining life, rights and citizenship? Second, how will neuro-remediation and other technologies change the definition of death for the brain injured and the cryonically suspended? Third, will people always have to be dead to be cryonically suspended? Fourth, how will changing technologies and definitions of identity affect the status of people revived from brain injury and cryonic suspension? I propose that Western liberal thought is (...)
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  5. A Socialist Approach to Disaster Preparedness: A Leftist Guide for the Coming Catastrophes.James Hughes - 2021 - After The Storm.
    Socialists have historically thought a lot about the catastrophic risks society faces. Today many DSA chapters have gotten involved in mutual aid to respond to the Covid crisis, generating a debate about how mutual aid fits into socialist work. One form of community engagement that is likely to be increasingly necessary, and is an opportunity for radicalizing angry neighbors, is disaster preparedness. While the prepper subculture is perceived as right-wing, and parts are tied into the militia movement, there are also (...)
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  6. Algorithms and Posthuman Governance.James Hughes - 2017 - Journal of Posthuman Studies.
    Since the Enlightenment, there have been advocates for the rationalizing efficiency of enlightened sovereigns, bureaucrats, and technocrats. Today these enthusiasms are joined by calls for replacing or augmenting government with algorithms and artificial intelligence, a process already substantially under way. Bureaucracies are in effect algorithms created by technocrats that systematize governance, and their automation simply removes bureaucrats and paper. The growth of algorithmic governance can already be seen in the automation of social services, regulatory oversight, policing, the justice system, and (...)
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  7.  90
    EcoSocialism and the Technoprogressive Perspective.James Hughes - 2021 - Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies.
    The ecosocialists have broad agreements about the radical political economic changes that are called for, and have largely rejected the mysanthropic and anti-technological views of some radical ecologists. But the ecosocialists differ on what role nuclear power and emerging technologies should play under a Green New Deal. The ecomodernists broadly agree on the importance of nuclear and emerging technologies, but their impact has been muted by their association with corporate “greenwashing” and neoliberal technofix apologias for free markets and boy geniuses. (...)
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  8.  45
    Technopolitics is Not Beyond Left and Right After All.James Hughes - 2021 - Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies.
    Attitudes towards science and technology are closely aligning with Culture War attitudes towards secularism, sexuality, gender, civil liberties, race and nationalism.
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  9. Beyond “Real Boys” and Back to Parental Obligations.James Hughes - 2005 - American Journal of Bioethics 5 (3):61-62.
    Learning to see the continuity between our everyday decision-making and our decision-making around new biotechnologies is key to acclimatizing to our enhanced future. By excavating this decision-making, Singh helps us see that Ritalin isn’t really that big a deal and helps dispel what Malcolm Gladwell (1999) noted as the “strange inversion of moral responsibility” encouraged by books like ‘Ritalin Nation’ and ‘Running on Ritalin,’ whose authors “seek to make those parents and physicians trying to help children with A.D.H.D. feel guilty (...)
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  10. Human Augmentation and the Age of the Transhuman.James Hughes - 2018 - In Tony Prescott, Nathan Lepora & Paul Verschure (eds.), Living Machines: A Handbook of Research in Biomimetic and Biohybrid Systems. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Human augmentation is discussed in three axes: the technological means, the ability being augmented, and the social systems that will be affected. The technological augmentations considered range from exocortical information and communication systems, to pharmaceuticals, tissue and genetic engineering, and prosthetic limbs and organs, to eventually nanomedical robotics, brain-computer interfaces and cognitive prostheses. These technologies are mapped onto the capabilities which we are in the process of enabling and augmenting, which include extending longevity and physical, sensory and cognitive abilities, and (...)
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  11. Buddhism and Abortion: A Western Approach.James Hughes - 1999 - In Buddhism and Abortion. New York, NY, USA: pp. 183-198.
    Most Western Buddhists employ both utilitarian and virtue ethics, in the paradoxical unity of compassion and wisdom. On the one hand, our personal karmic clarity is most related to our cultivation of compassionate intention, but on the other hand we also need to develop penetrating insight into the most effective means to the ends. We do not believe that the person who helps others without any intention of doing so to have accrued merit, while we look upon the person who (...)
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  12.  43
    Beyond Human Nature: Human-Racism in the Debate Over Genetic and Nanotechnological Enhancement.James J. Hughes - 2007 - In Nanoscale. New York, NY, USA: pp. 61-70.
    The alleged threats to human nature are at the root of many concerns about the use of nanotechnology to extend human health and capabilities. Bu the concept of human nature is illusory, selectively deployed, and does not impose any ethical constraint on human enhancement. Human nature is not only a meaningless concept, a product of our imperfect human cognition and a relic of the idea of a "soul," but, as it is deployed today against human enhancement technologies, it is also (...)
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  13.  28
    Humanism for Personhood: Against Human-Racism: A New Fight for Human Rights.James Hughes - 2004 - Free Inquiry 1 (June):36-37.
    In the coming decades humanists and trans-humanists need to wage a global campaign to radicalize the idea of human rights. We need to assert our rights to control our own bodies and brains, whether we choose to change our genders or medicate our brains. We need to assert that the measure of a society’s fairness is how universally available we make the prerequisites for achieving our fullest potential. We need to defend the right to enhance ourselves - whether through education (...)
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  14.  22
    Aliens, Technology and Freedom: SF Consumption and SocioEthical Attitudes.James Hughes - 1995 - Futures Research Quarterly 4 (11):39-58.
    As we enter the 21st century, we do well to consider the values implicit in science fiction, the principal arena of future speculation in popular culture. This study explored whether consumption of science fiction (SF) is correlated with distinctive socio-ethical views. SF tends to advocate the extension of value and rights to all forms of intelligence, regardless of physical form; enthusiasm for technology; and social and economic libertarianism. This suggests that consumers with these socio-ethical views would be attracted to the (...)
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  15.  84
    Social Pressures for Technological Mood Management.James Hughes - 2009 - Free Inquiry 29:28-32.
    The prospect of neurotechnologies for mood manipulation alarms some people who worry about the pernicious effects they might have. In particular there is a concern that individuals will be pressured to make themselves inauthentically happy, and tolerant of things that should make them sad or angry. The most common result of social pressures to adjust mood will likely be far more beneficial both for the individual and society. This essay reviews research on the stresses of "emotion work" and the personality (...)
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  16.  72
    Utilitarianism, And The Genetic Welfare Of Future Generations: A Reply To Salvi.James Hughes - 1997 - Eubios Journal of Asian and International Bioethics 7 (2):38-39.
    The utilitarian calculators of genetic therapy would do well to reflect again on Mills' liberal democratic rules of thumb: utility will generally be maximized when people are free to make choices, with good information, good instruments of collective action (democracy), and relative equality. My rule of thumb is that if we give future generations genetic choices, they will generally choose health, happiness, intelligence, and longevity, for themselves and their descendants.
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  17.  28
    Humanism for Personhood: Against Human-Racism.James J. Hughes - 2004 - Free Inquiry 24.
    To the degree that we succeed in our campaign for personhood over human-racism we will fulfill the dreams of our humanist forebears.
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  18.  57
    Global Technology Regulation and Potentially Apocalyptic Technological Threats.James J. Hughes - 2007 - In Fritz Allhoff, Patrick Lin, James Moor & John Weckert (eds.), Nanoethics: The Ethical and Social Implications of Nanotechnology. New York: Wiley. pp. 201-214.
    In 2000 Bill Joy proposed that the best way to prevent technological apocalypse was to "relinquish" emerging bio-, info- and nanotechnologies. His essay introduced many watchdog groups to the dangers that futurists had been warning of for decades. One such group, ETC, has called for a moratorium on all nanotechnological research until all safety issues can be investigated and social impacts ameliorated. In this essay I discuss the differences and similarities of regulating bio- and nanotechnological innovation to the efforts to (...)
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