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The Future of Health

Wednesday, March 4, 2020, 6:30-8:00pm

Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory, Foster 107

The charge of speculative bioethics is simple; future technologies raise ethical questions which necessitate serious ethical engagement far in advance of their arrival. In this meeting of Future Café, we will be working to ask what the ideas of “health” might have arisen in the far future, and what alternative futures for “healthy living” we might imagine centuries out from now.

Even today, the speculative potentials of technological and biological advances are wide-ranging; from CRISPR and other techniques for genome-editing, to the increasingly everyday notion of human-machine cybernetics, our horizons are clouded with radical destabilizations to what it means to be human and “healthy.” What kind of futures of health and healthy existence can we imagine, and what new moral circumstances are we accordingly forced to inhabit?

Likewise, in the spirit of our theme for this quarter, “connections,” we might also ask where we seek to draw limits of diagnosis between the individual and the greater world? Can we be healthy in sick times? What might a vision of health that includes nonhuman or artificial forms look like? How might our visions of sickness, medicine, and individual, societal, and environmental look after radical change?

We look forward to hearing your imaginative ideas. Future Café is an open discussion for all University of Chicago undergraduate students. All majors and levels of familiarity with the topic are welcome.