Since the 1990’s, the debate concerning the ethical, legal and societal aspects of ‘neuro-enhancement’ has evolved into a massive discourse, both in the public realm and in the academic arena. This ethical debate, however, tends to repeat the same sets of arguments over and over again. Normative disagreements between transhumanists and bioconservatives on invasive or radical brain stimulators, and uncertainties regarding the use and effectivity of nootropic pharmaceuticals dominate the field. Building on the results of an extensive European project on responsible research and innovation in neuro-enhancement (NERRI), we observe and encourage that the debate is now entering a new and, as we will argue, more realistic and societally relevant stage. This new stage concerns those technologies that enter the market as ostensibly harmless contrivances that consumers may use for self-care or entertainment. We use the examples and arguments of participants in NERRI debates to describe three case studies of such purportedly innocent ‘toys’. Based upon this empirical material, we argue that these ‘soft’ enhancement gadgets are situated somewhere in the boundary zone between the internal and the external, between the intimate and the intrusive, between the familiar and the unfamiliar, between the friendly and the scary and, in Foucauldian terms, between technologies of the self and technologies of control. Therefore, we describe their physiognomy with the help of a term borrowed from Jacques Lacan, namely as “extimate” technologies.
Neuroethics – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 2, 2016
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera