Better Humans?: Understanding the Enhancement Project

As its title suggests, Michael Hauskeller's book takes a skeptical look at our ability to use biomedical technology to improve our lives by altering our mental and physical capacities. Hauskeller is not a religious conservative who worries about taunting the gods by taking evolution into our own hands. Instead, he criticizes "the enhancement project" from a broadly secular humanist perspective. Indeed, the main virtue of Better Humans? is Hauskeller's attempt to understand and explain what often look like religious arguments against enhancement in terms that are more tangible and less spiritual. Unfortunately, the arguments are almost entirely negative, and by the end of the book the reader is left with the vague sense that we really ought to just accept what nature has given us, no matter how paltry or unfair, and stop dreaming of better things to come.

Published in: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews
2013