The dream of transcending the human through the digital matrix: A relational critique
Keywords: 
human transcendence
digital technologies
personhood
dehumanization
relational sociology
relational goods
Issue Date: 
2019
Publisher: 
Uniwersytet Mikołaja Kopernika
ISSN: 
2300-7648
Citation: 
Donati, P. (Pierpaolo). "The dream of transcending the human through the digital matrix: A relational critique". Scientia et Fides. 7 (2), 2019, 171 - 193
Abstract
The advent of the digital era brings with it the dream of ‘transcending the human’ through the most sophisticated AI / robot technologies. The Author argues that the concept and practices of ‘transcendence’ are deeply ambiguous, since on the one hand they simply aim to overcome the weaknesses, limits and fragility of the human, while on the other hand they modify the human by selecting its specific qualities and its causal properties in a way to generate beings ‘other than human.’ Post / trans-humanist ideologies supporting a radical transformative change, instead of strengthening the human, lead to its dehumanization because they imply the denial of the characteristics that are uniquely human and / or those that constitute human nature. To understand when new digital technologies enhance the human (keeping it within its natural boundaries) or distort it, it is necessary to analyze and evaluate social processes on the basis of a relational vision that shows us which human relationships emerge from the use of technologies.

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