Re: In defence of humans


The problem here is that we have yet to find a common conceptual starting place.
We're not sync-ing b/c we don't seem to agree on enough to *start* the
conversation. Frustrating, no?

My server's had the cyber-burpies, so let me just touch on a coupla things b/f it
spasms again.

Your arguments assume something that I do not: they assume that if it is not "man"
operating as destiny's co-piolot, then someone/thing ELSE must be. But WHY? Why
must there be a pilot at all? To note that "the great sweep of life," as Nietzsche
called it, is bigger than we are, is not to say that we are then incapable of
responsible responsiveness, of an ethics of decision and behavior. One does not
necessarily lead to the other. Though there are certainly nihilistic
post-humanists, the latter does not necessarily lead to the former.

As for the term "humanity," here's a quote for YOU, from Avital Ronell:
"humanity (a term that acquired the prestige of its contemporary usage at the
Nuremburg trials)will certainly have to rethink the projects and projections that
have, despite everything, traced out a history of indecency--a history which
compromises the very possibility of a thinking of futurity."

It's respectable to want to "fight the good fight," but it's also respectable to
stop wanting the future to be determined by the past... The latter will require
that we strive to think the unthought.

As for cyberspace, that's a tired argument. What gets missed in it
is what *always* seems to get missed when thinking is enframed by social realism,
by "humanism": cyberspace offers us an/other inflection of not tied to
substantial spaces; what's at stake here is a reconfiguration of the possibilities
for sharing the world. And think again if you think VR doesn't have anything to do
with "real life." So called "real life" is just as often a function of VR as it is
the other way around. It's too late to say, well, let's just stop fiddling with
technology and solve these real problems first. We've already moved to
cyburbia...whether we, personally, have ever "jacked-in" or not.

The posthumanst paradox is that we both make and/but are (more so) MADE by history.
And it is precisely at the moment when we think we have found THE way out of that
paradox that we become the most dangerous...when we believe we have found the road
to paradise. It's not that the "human" has become unimportant, Colin. It is that
it's time to re-phrase the question. It's time to ask what it means to be human in
a post-humanist world. It's a different approach but it is NOT NOTHING. And it may
be a whole hellova lot less dangerous.



Partial thread listing: