Humanism Contra Post-humanism

In: Historical Materialism
Sunyoung Ahn Assistant Professor, Department of English, Language and Literature, College of Liberal Arts, Korea University Seoul South Korea

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Post-humanism accuses humanism of inventing a human subject who is domineering and destructive. As a remedy, it redefines the human as a being informed by passivity and finitude and bound by ontological vulnerability. In so doing, it undermines the creative and transformative power of human agency and obliterates politics and history as shaped by human actions. Noting how this intensifies the experience of alienation and de-humanisation, the essay looks to Marxist and socialist humanism to resuscitate the idea of humans as agents of history. Humans are not a problem to be overcome; rather, they are the means through which a more viable world can be achieved, for humans and non-humans alike.

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