So here is a draft of my seminar this fall. I’ve spent a lot of time cutting it back and giving it some (limited) focus. Let me know what you think. The italics disappeared with the cutting and pasting. Imagine it is there.

1. Introduction and Overview

2. Does (and Need) Technology Make Us Dumber?
Bauerlein, The Dumbest Generation, 1-162.

3. Technology and Thinking—Part 2
Bauerlein, The Dumbest Generation, 163-237
Jaron Lanier, “Modernity Conceives the Future”
George Grant, Technology and Empire, 111-43
Yuval Levin, Imagining the Future, selection to be announced

4. Will Technology Make Us Smarter (and Better)?: The Utopian Eugenics of Our Time
Philip Kitcher, The Lives to Come, 187-204
Virginia Postrel, The Substance of Style, 164-91
Ronald Green, Biotechnology, chapter 3
Lee M. Silver, Biotechnology, chapter 4.

5. Skeptical Views of Enhancement and Other Changes We (Maybe) Can Believe in
Maxwell J. Mehlman, The Price of Perfection, chapters 4-5
Michael Sandel, The Case Against Perfection, 45-84
Peter Augustine Lawler, “Being Personal These Days: Designer Babies and the Future of Liberal Democracy”
Larry Arnhart, Biotechnology, chapter 6.

6. Will Biotechnology Allow Us to Be Able to Live Happily Forever?
Fukyama, Our Posthuman Future, 57-72
Leon Kass, Biotechnology, chapter 1
Ronald Bailey, Biotechnology, chapter 2
Charles Rubin, “Beyond Mankind”
Carl Elliott, “The Tyranny of Happiness”
Stephen Braun, “The Science of Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Mood”

7. Mid-Term Reflections

8. Technology as Political Philosophy
Wilson Carey McWilliams, Redeeming Democracy in America, 89-108
Grant, Technology and Empire, 13-60
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, “We Have Ceased to See the Purpose”

9. Technology and Scientism
Postman, Technopoly, 144-63
Patricia Churchland, “Human Dignity from a Neurophilosophical Perspective”
ADDITION: STEVEN PINKER, “Science is Not the Enemy of the Humanities”
Marilynne Robinson, “Cosmology”
Ari Schulman, “Why Our Minds Are Not Like Computers”
Sherry Turkle, Alone Together, chapter 5.

10. Technology and Scientism—Part 2
Satel and Littlefield, Brainwashed

11. Technology and the Manipulation of Democracy
Dan Balz, Collision 2012, 35-84
Schmidt and Cohen, The New Digital Age, chapter 2

12. Tocqueville, Religion, Nature, and Our Biotechnological Future
Democracy in America, sections to be announced.
Richard Sherlock, Biotechnology, chapter 7
Benjamin Storey, “Tocqueville and Biotechnology”
Peter Augustine Lawler, “Compassionate Conservatism and Biotechnology”

13. Technology and Literature
Fukuyama, 1-18
Huxley, Brave New World

14. Technology and Literature—Part 2: Thinking About Space
Walker Percy, Lost in the Cosmos, 2nd space Odyssey
Gattaca, an excerpt from the script

Articles by Peter Lawler

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