Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics

, Volume 39, Issue 5, pp 389–392 | Cite as

Nicholas Agar: Truly human enhancement: a philosophical defense of limits

MIT Press, 2014, 232 pp, $39 (hardcover), ISBN: 978-0-262-02663-5
  • Loredana PersampieriEmail author

Human enhancement is a highly controversial topic, intersecting other emerging bioethical issues in areas such as trans- and post-humanism and neuroscience. In Truly Human Enhancement: A Philosophical Defense of Limits, Nicholas Agar contributes to the debate, following his 2004 and 2010 books on this topic, Liberal Eugenics [1] and Humanity’s End [2]. The main thesis of Truly Human Enhancement hinges on the importance of taking the degree of human enhancement into account when justifying its acceptability or unacceptability. In this way, Agar endorses human enhancement to a certain extent, but within limits. In advocating this stance, the book treats a set of major concepts pertaining to human nature, its limits, and the possibility of overcoming such limits through science and technology. Agar advances the concept of radical enhancement, defined as “the improvement of significant attributes and abilities to levels that greatly exceed what is currently possible for human beings” (p....


  1. 1.
    Agar, Nicholas. 2004. Liberal eugenics: In defense of human enhancement. Malden, MA: Blackwell.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Agar, Nicholas. 2010. Humanity’s end: Why we should reject radical enhancement. Cambridge: MIT Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of LawLUMSA UniversityRomeItaly

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