Science and Technology

Fukuyama’s “Our Posthuman Future”

A prescient read on biotech, politics & human nature

Our Posthuman Future eBook de Francis Fukuyama - EPUB | Rakuten Kobo  Belgique

Fukuyama, Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2002)

I am sometimes asked what biology could possibly have to do with politics. For the answer, look no further than this book by Francis Fukuyama. Yes, that Francis Fukuyama, the end-of-history person. Written way back in 2002, Fukuyama examines how we should use or restrict such emerging human biotechnologies. It’s striking how well the book has aged as he looks at trends that have since become well-established: the use of mind-altering prescription drugs, aging societies, and novel biotechnologies such as largescale genomics and gene editing.

Fukuyama strikes a cautionary note by looking at the impact of already-existing biotechnologies. He points to the explosion in use of Ritalin and Prozac in the United States. Tens of millions of Americans use these drugs, respectively, to treat ADHD and improve concentration, and to lift self-esteem and treat depression. Thus biotechnology (specifically neuropharmacology) is already being used to narrow the normal gamut of human emotions. Fukuyama identifies powerful pressures pathologizing more and more mental states and thus “requiring” medical treatment:


Leave a Reply