International Events

Kircher Network Online Lecture Series

Human Enhancement: Myth, Ideology and Utopia

17th of June, 2021, 5pm – 7pm CET (lecture and discussion)

Lecture by Anna Bugajska, Jesuit University Ignatianum, Kraków, Poland.

Prof. Bugajska is the Head of the Institute of Modern Languages and the Head of Language and Culture Studies Department. She conducts interdisciplinary research in philosophy, bioethics, literature and collaborates with the Institute of Philosophy of the Jesuit University Ignatianum.

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Human enhancement is closely linked to the rise of the transhumanist movement (Humanity+), which actively propagates radical techno-transformation of humanity. It frequently utilizes tropes known from mythology, utopian visions of a hedonistic paradise or a morally perfect utopia, and sometimes veer in the direction of religious and ideological
discourse. Three aspects of this discourse: myth, ideology and utopia, will be analyzed. Although the three aspects are coexistent and sometimes overlap, they are not selfsame. The myth here will be understood as a specific fiction legitimating and codifying unfounded belief in human enhancement as the way to salvation or goal of life. It will be related to
the studies by Michael Hauskeller (2014, 2016), Calvin Mercer and Tracy J. Trothen (2014), and Ernst Bloch (1992). The ideological dimension will be taken to mean the construction of a system of ideas as part of a plan of action and will be presented regarding the studies of Karl Mannheim (1992) and Mariano Asla (2018, 2020). Finally, the utopian character of human enhancement discourse will concentrate on the idealized biopolitical vision and the expression of the contemporary perspectives on biopower and will draw from the theories presented by Lucas E. Misseri (2016, 2019) and Andrew Pilsch (2017).

The Kircher Online Lecture Series offers a unique opportunity to listen and discuss with guest scholars from our institutions, facilitating a cross-cultural and comparative perspective on theological and philosophical topics.

More: Anna Bugajska: long abstract