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Rethinking Cognitive Enhancement$
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Ruud ter Meulen, Ahmed Mohammed, and Wayne Hall

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198727392

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198727392.001.0001

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The ethical debate on human enhancement and cognitive enhancement by way of biotechnologies

The ethical debate on human enhancement and cognitive enhancement by way of biotechnologies

Chapter:
(p.15) Chapter 2 The ethical debate on human enhancement and cognitive enhancement by way of biotechnologies
Source:
Rethinking Cognitive Enhancement
Author(s):

Ruud ter Meulen

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198727392.003.0002

This chapter presents an overview of the main issues in the ethical debate on the use of biotechnologies to enhance human functioning, including cognitive enhancement technologies. In this debate, one can distinguish between favorable views and cautious and prohibitive positions about human enhancement. The chapter includes a discussion about the concept and moral value of human enhancement as opposed to therapy, the relation of enhancement with the goals of medicine, the benefits and risks of enhancement technologies, the perspective of justice and access to enhancement technologies, and a discussion of enhancement in relation with fundamental values, like human nature, human dignity, human virtues, and authenticity. This chapter’s purpose is to reach a better understanding of the ethical implications of the empirical findings reported in this volume. However, the chapter also wants to contribute to the ethical debate on cognitive enhancement by linking this debate to empirical research.

Keywords:   ethics, enhancement, cognitive enhancement, philosophy, neuroethics

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