Professional article

Genomic Metaphysics

ContributorsMauron, Alex
Published inJournal of Molecular Biology, vol. 319, no. 4, p. 957-962
Publication date2002

Recently, the famous physicist Steven Hawkins, author of the best-seller “A brief history of time”, made a rather provocative proposal about the human genome. He called for an extensive program of genetic modification of humans in order for mankind to remain competitive in the race with machines and computers. Hawkins proposes a program of human self-engineering and wants our species to take responsibility for its genome, lest we could be outperformed by intelligent machines. “We should follow this road if we want biological systems to remain superior to electronic ones”. Whether this somewhat bizarre proposal make sense or not is not my concern here. I merely mention it because it represents a radical break from the common humanistic intuitions concerning the genome and human nature. Steven Hawkins' proposal presupposes that the genome of homo sapiens can and ought in principle to be subjected to the will and the projects of homo faber.

Citation (ISO format)
MAURON, Alex. Genomic Metaphysics. In: Journal of Molecular Biology, 2002, vol. 319, n° 4, p. 957–962. doi: 10.1016/S0022-2836(02)00348-0
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Article (Published version)
ISSN of the journal0022-2836

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