Within natural sciences it is often assumed there is a core unchanging ‘human nature’ that is the result of natural selection over millions of years. In contrast scholars in the humanities stress the malleable foundation of what defines us as human.
We are living in an age marked by rapid growth in knowledge about the human body and brain, and new technologies with the potential to change them. Developments in science and technology allow us to enhance our physical appearance and capabilities with plastic surgery and robotic limbs. Energy drinks, legal highs and the use of prescription drugs legally affect our cognition. From robotics to smart phones, technology is blurring the boundaries between human and machine. All of this begs the question, are we human anymore and is being ‘human’ enough?
Philosophers and cultural theorists suggest we are entering a period of posthumanism: recognising the ways in which being human involves complex inter-relationships with other humans, technologies, non-human entities, communication streams, and networks. We prefer the term iHuman and we bring a new field of interdisciplinary study to understand being human in its entirety.