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0 votes
And what are your views about it?
all i know about anarcho-transhumanism is william gillis.

my views about it are that tech will not save us from the problems that tech has created. but that's hardly an answer, so i merely comment...
i had never even heard the term (with the anarcho- prefix). thanks for those links, dot.

from one of them:

" eventually shake off sedentary civilization and take our place as hunter-gatherers between the stars."

Wow indeed.

"It is the knowledge that victory for the working class will only truly arrive when every worker individually owns the means of production—capable of fabricating anything and everything for themselves."

Reminds me of a conversation about 3D printers I had a few years ago with a couple of communist friends, after reading about them for the first time one of the guys was gleefully fired up - "IT'S COMMUNISM IN A BOX, COMMUNISM IN A FUCKING BOX!".


"And ultimately it will be the freedom to surpass the limited bandwidth of language and connect more and more directly to one another—to merge minds and transcend individual subjectivities as desired."

On the other hand, I'm not sure how I feel about the above, instinctively it feels threatening in a way that's difficult to articulate.
Yosemite: "instinctively it feels threatening in a way that's difficult to articulate."

I'll give it a go, since I have some experience dealing with transhumanist mindsets.

1. It sounds like it's taking the Gnostic notion the 'we' are prisoners 'in' our bodies, body as archon, 'soul' within wanting to be free, as presups.

2. While sounding optimistic, almost giddy, there's a deep dissatisfaction, almost resentment, with being a body. Listen to the language. Body 'arbitrarily' limits 'us.' Through some shiny gadgetry 'we' (as soul?) my transcend these imposed limitation and 'through' this human-body 2.0 'we' be freer.

3. It might be threatening like hearing any disembodied voice may be threatening...Lovecraft does a much better job, though.

Gillis hangs out over at C4SS, and though they have good articles from time to time, they are most definitely infected with world-quantification bug.

Edited for grammar.
um.... is this a 'brain in a jar' thing?
Or, all the brains in their own little jar, all wired together?

Now, if we could just figure out how to keep the brains from pissing all over each other's jars, we'd have Synthesis!
(sorry, i know this was a serious question, i'm just having a really hard time taking a lot of this hyphenated shit seriously.)

2 Answers

0 votes

Anarcho-pedia does quite a good job of giving an answer. Even better than what I was planning to write actually.

To save you a redirect, I'll post what it says here.

Anarcho-transhumanism is an adaptation of anarchist ideals (anti-hierarchy, anti-repression, anti-restriction) to the tenets of the Transhumanist movement in cultural, intellectual and political spheres.

It seeks for the liberation of humanity from repression and restrictions through the technological and scientific enhancement of humanity and human actions. spells it out in the following:

  • Political Freedom: Against the tyranny of government.
  • Economic Freedom: Against the tyranny of capitalism.
  • Biological Freedom: Against the tyranny of genes.

It is the recognition that social liberty is inherently bound up with material liberty, and that freedom is ultimately a matter of expanding our capacity and opportunities to engage with the world around us. It is the realization that our resistance against those social forces that would subjugate and limit us is but part of a spectrum of efforts to expand human agency -- to facilitate our inquiry and creativity. This means not just being free from the arbitrary limitations our bodies might impose, but free to shape the world around us and deepen the potential of our connections to one another through it.

Quite honestly, it sounds not only ridiculous but shifty to me simply because of its adherence to transhumanism.

I only believe in technology to a point, not completely, unlike transhumanists. To put full faith in technology to make human beings and society better is very unbalanced and unrealistic.

It's not that simple and is, quite frankly, an absurd way of thinking.

by (570 points)
edited by
i would go so far as to say that transhumanism could not exist without the institutional hierarchies and domination that industrialism and high technology require.

"against the tyranny of genes" - yeah, that pretty much sums it up for me. kind of the apex of human arrogance and the related desire to completely control everything about nature and the universe.

i have no interest whatsoever.
That's a good point. It could be argued along the same lines anarcho-transhumanism would need to strongarm people to get them on board the whole "human 2.0" bandwagon.

I just don't see all people willingly adopt technology. What are the anarcho-transhumanists to do then? Human nature in general won't change like they planned if they let that stand.

"Anarcho-transhumanism is an adaptation of anarchist ideals (anti-hierarchy, anti-repression, anti-restriction) to the tenets of the Transhumanist movement in cultural, intellectual and political spheres."

that could easily be describing anarcho-capitalism by simply changing a few words:

Anarcho-capitalism is an adaptation of anarchist ideals (anti-hierarchy, anti-repression, anti-restriction) to the tenets of the capitalist ideology in cultural, intellectual, economic and political spheres.

it is clear that all people will not willingly adopt technology, especially at that level. just as all people will not willingly give up technology. the problem, as i see it, is the "all people" aspect. 

mass society kind of requires a one-size-fits-all approach, and that is a major issue in my mind (maybe the biggest one). in a world with only smaller (human-scale?) bands/tribes/packs of human social organization, if one tribe wants to have all that high-tech shit, i say go for it. as long as whatever they do does not impact my tribe, i care not. but of course, realistically, such technology cannot be created without impacting huge swaths of life well outside their immediate living-space. 

i say the same to the @-caps; if your tribe wants to be capitalist, go for it - just know that as soon as you impact my tribe (through resource extraction, accumulation of necessities, etc), there will be consequences.

sorry to bring @-caps into this thread, but i see these two isms as similar in some very real ways. and several folks i have met that identify as transhumanist also identify as anarcho-capitalists. it seems there is a similar attraction that the two have, for (particularly younger) folks in the high-tech world.  that says something, and i think it is significant, but i can't quite put my finger on exactly what it is.

0 votes
The gist of it is that anarcho-transhumanism is anarcho-capitalism with cyborgs.

Transhumanism promotes the idea of humans intervening in human evolution and attempting to make humans more effecient and superior via advances in science and technology. It's to overcome the limits of the evolution, that they claim is repressing us all, and using advances in science and technology that doesn't exist will set us free. Transhumanism strives for a technocratic-utopia. Some transhumanists try to tone down the cyborg shit because they're probably aware the cyborg shit makes them sound silly. However, the cyborg stuff is heavily implied and is a common theme within transhumanism articles and a book I've read. Same goes for getting people to invest in cryonics and other goofy snake oil.

Transhumanism is based around market forces and upgrading your body via new technologies and sciences determined by market forces. Market forces are like competition, supply, demand, gordon gekko, investors... Capitalism appears to be a core aspect to varying degrees. R&D under capitalism is the most efficient way for them to achieve their goal. The wealthy invest in making new innovations and when the technologies emerge, they're developed, sold, profit for higher returns, reinvest in something new, and repeat. The transhumanists at least acknowledge their philosophy will benefit the ones with the wealth and/or most resources. They accept this and reason that over time it will become cheaper for poor people/groups to gain access to. They're proponents of of technogaianism, which is basically developing future technology to restore Earth's environment.

I think anarcho-transhumanism was made up by one guy, possibly two. Anarcho-trashumanism doesn't really address capitalism in a meaningful way. It points out capitalism is ableist so that's better than nothing. It's unclear of the differences between of anarcho-transhumanism and transhumanism. The explanation from the anarcho-trashumanist faq is that transhumanists are fascists and naive. Going straight to the calling other people fascists is lame and unhelpful. The anarcho-trashumanism faq goes into more "depth" explaining the difference between it and primitivism, anti-civ, that "fully automated gay space communism" meme than the differences with transhumanism. Afaict anarcho-trashumanism using 3D-printers and handing out naloxone to people addicted to opiods. It says it asks "radical questions" like why are humans okay with other humans dying. In the end, anarcho-trashumanism relies too much on scientism (the "scientist" that foresees all, knows all and are superior) and its magicians, oracles, snake oil salesmen, and priests.
by (4.7k points)