Our Bodies Are Selves, by Philip Hefner, Ann Milliken Pederson and Susan Barreto

Our Bodies Are SelvesThis book opens with Brendan Marrocco, who lost both arms and both legs in the Iraq war in 2009. He now has a fiancé, who can ‘see’ beyond the missing limbs. She can ‘see’ more than the existing body. Marrocco has been in the news recently as a recipient of a double arm transplant.

This book considers what it means to be human in a world of remarkable medical technological breakthroughs. The pace of change is continuing to accelerate, with ‘transhumanism’ aiming to eliminate aging and to enhance human intellectual, physical and psychological capacities.

The implication is that aging is simply another health problem to be ‘solved’ in the coming decades.

This book provides a series of ‘takes’ on the human body from the points of view of medical science, ethics and theology. There is no single narrative holding the chapters together, indeed the chapters can be read in any order.

However, what makes the book so important is the underlying warning that science is changing fast and we need to keep up-to-date with what is happening.

Keith Suter

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