Blurring Boundaries and Expanding Horizons: Reflections on the Theoretical and Critical Aspects of Posthumanism and Transhumanism
The book is divided into two parts – Part I and Part II. The first Part is primarily concerned with a critical explication of the various aspects of the theories of posthumanism and transhumanism. The Second Part deals with analyzing the posthuman and transhuman elements in the 21st century narratives. The book begins with the discussion of various directions from which trans- as well as posthumanism frequently question their relationship to humanism and reconsider what it means to be human and then endeavors to show how if transhumanism can be seen as an intensification of humanism, a type of hyper-humanism, we may view posthumanism as a break with humanism, as a post-humanism. Then from a critical posthumanist perspective that questions anthropocentrism, human exceptionalism, and the centrality of the ‘human’ subject in the era of the Anthropocene, the author strives to analyze the aesthetic choices the contemporary writers in science fictional narratives make to depict the posthuman and its aftereffects
Posthumanism is an ambiguous term that suffers from similar semantic uncertainties as postmodernism. Its ‘post’ prefix hints at the arrival of a new epoch – as ‘post’humanism it claims to identify a new mode of being in the world that departs significantly from the conditions of humanism. As post ‘humanism’, the ‘post’ radicalizes its suffix to suggest a new model of politics and philosophy; however, it does so in a fashion that echoes its antecedent’s critical ethos. Posthumanism thus refers to the populist diagnosis of a new era, a new mode of critical enquiry that defines itself in relation to humanism, and a working through of the latter’s critical tradition.
Humanistic geography puts the (singular) figure of the human front and center and examines the role of human agency, creativity, and consciousness in making sense of the world. It understands the human in binary opposition to the nonhuman. In contrast and in different ways, posthumanist geographers cast their analytical net a little wider to challenge a singular model of the human subject and to blur and enliven the boundaries between the human and the nonhuman. Empirically, they push in two interwoven directions – within the category of the human and along its margins – to formulate new spatial philosophies and politics.
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