Human enhancement: A symposium

by Charles on November 6, 2011

23 November 2011: 6-8 pm: E.P Abraham Lecture Theatre, Green Templeton College, Oxford.

Humans have always sought to enhance themselves and their performance. Examples include education, the drinking of coffee, and the choice of reproductive partners whose genes are perceived to be desirable. But now, and increasingly, technology allows for enhancement of a kind and to a degree that call into question the definition of an individual and the relationship of ‘enhanced’ persons to ‘non-enhanced’ persons and to society generally. If person X takes a substance that increases his IQ by 100 points still person X? If the enhancing substance is not available to everyone, what are the political consequences? Is there anything wrong with the use of performance enhancers in sport? What about drugs that improve performance in university examinations? Is it desirable or practicable to ban enhancements of all types?

These and related questions will be addressed by:

• Julian Savulescu, of the Uehiro Institute for Practical Ethics, University of Oxford (Enhancement in sport),
• Nick Bostrom, of the Future of Humanity Institute, University of Oxford (Human cognitive enhancement),
• David Jones, of the Anscombe Centre for Bioethics (Objections to Enhancement),
• Guy Goodwin, Professor of Psychiatry, University of Oxford (Ritalin and Cognitive Enhancement: Some clinical findings)
• Charles Foster, The Ethox Centre, University of Oxford (Dignity and enhancement)

All are welcome. There is no need to register, and no charge. Enquiries to Charles.Foster@gtc.ox.ac.uk

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