The Posthuman Condition: Consciousness beyond the brain
Intellect Books, Bristol
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An earlier incarnation of this book was published in 1995, with the title, "The Post-Human Condition", and reprinted in 1997. The current version was completely rewritten, with new sections, jacket and illustrations, and now stands as the definitive presentation of the argument. Pepperell proposes that human society is shifting from a period in which the dominant ideology is broadly Humanist to one that he terms Posthumanist. By calling into question certain 'human-centred' beliefs, like the uniqueness of self, the essential division between humans and the rest of the world, or the belief that the brain alone is responsible for consciousness, he challenges the metaphysical foundations of western thought. Without being technologically deterministic, he argues that our developing relationship wth increasingly complex technologies is forcing us to reconsider some long-cherished beliefs and to face the prospect of machines that share some of our supposedly unique characteristics, like intelligence and self-awareness. The argument is essentially cross-disciplinary in that it draws on knowledge from several fields, including philosophy, chaos theory, technology and consciousness studies, and attempts to synthesize a diverse range of ideas into a coherent position that can be applied in a number of fields, not least contemporary art theory. The books has been widely reviewed, cited, quoted, and included on numerous academic reading lists. The Posthuman Manifesto, included as part of the book, has been translated into a number of European languages, including French, German and Italian.
Pepperell, R., 'The Posthuman Condition', (2003). Intellect Books, Bristol
- Artistic Research