Humankind by Felipe Fernández-Armesto
A Brief History

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Synopsis

The discovery that the DNA of chimpanzees and humans is incredibly similar, sharing 98% of the same code, suggests that there is very little different--or special--about the human animal. Likewise, advances in artificial intelligence mean that humans no longer have exclusive access to reason, consciousness and imagination. Indeed, the harder we cling to the concept of humanity, the more slippery it becomes. But if it breaks down altogether, what will this mean for human values, human rights, and the defense of human dignity?
In a book of breathtaking range, Felipe Fernandez-Armesto takes us on an enlightening journey through the history of humankind, a narrative tour de force that challenges our most fundamental belief--that we are, and have always been, human. Humankind confronts the problem from a historical perspective, showing how our current understanding of what it means to be human has been shaken by new discoveries from science and philosophy. The author shows how our concept of humankind has changed over time, tracing its faltering expansion to its present limits and arguing that these limits are neither fixed or scientifically verifiable. Controversially, he proposes that we have further to go in developing our concept of humankind and that we need to rethink it as a matter of urgency.
One of the most imaginative historians writing today, Felipe Fernandez-Armesto here combines astonishing breadth with passionate and exciting storytelling. For the intellectually curious, for those interested in history, philosophy, science and culture, and for anyone who has ever wondered about what makes us human, Humankind offers an exhilarating new perspective.
 

About Felipe Fernández-Armesto

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Felipe FernAndez-Armesto is currently the William P. ReynFelipe FernAndez-Armesto is currently the William P. ReynFelipe FernAndez-Armesto is currently the William P. Reynolds Professor of History at Notre Dame University, and is oolds Professor of History at Notre Dame University, and is oolds Professor of History at Notre Dame University, and is on the editorial board of the "Journal of Global History". Fen the editorial board of the "Journal of Global History". Fen the editorial board of the "Journal of Global History". FernAndez-Armesto is also a member of the history faculty at QrnAndez-Armesto is also a member of the history faculty at QrnAndez-Armesto is also a member of the history faculty at Queen Mary College, University of London. The author, coauthoueen Mary College, University of London. The author, coauthoueen Mary College, University of London. The author, coauthor, or editor of more than twenty-five books, FernAndez-Armesr, or editor of more than twenty-five books, FernAndez-Armesr, or editor of more than twenty-five books, FernAndez-Armesto's work has been translated into twenty-two languages. Histo's work has been translated into twenty-two languages. Histo's work has been translated into twenty-two languages. His books include "Before Columbus"; "The Times Illustrated His books include "Before Columbus"; "The Times Illustrated His books include "Before Columbus"; "The Times Illustrated History of Europe"; "Columbus"; "Millennium: A History of the Ltory of Europe"; "Columbus"; "Millennium: A History of the Ltory of Europe"; "Columbus"; "Millennium: A History of the Last Thousand Years" (the subject of a ten-part series on CNNast Thousand Years" (the subject of a ten-part series on CNNast Thousand Years" (the subject of a ten-part series on CNN); "Civilizations: Culture, Ambition, and the Transformation); "Civilizations: Culture, Ambition, and the Transformation); "Civilizations: Culture, Ambition, and the Transformation of Nature"; "Near a Thousand Tables"; "The Americas"; "Idea of Nature"; "Near a Thousand Tables"; "The Americas"; "Idea of Nature"; "Near a Thousand Tables"; "The Americas"; "Ideas That Changed the World"; "Humankind: A Brief History"; "Ths That Changed the World"; "Humankind: A Brief History"; "Ths That Changed the World"; "Humankind: A Brief History"; "The Times Atlas of World Exploration"; "Reformations"; "Truth"e Times Atlas of World Exploration"; "Reformations"; "Truth"e Times Atlas of World Exploration"; "Reformations"; "Truth"; and "The Times Guide to the Peoples of Europe". ; and "The Times Guide to the Peoples of Europe". ; and "The Times Guide to the Peoples of Europe".
 
Published May 17, 2004 by Oxford University Press. 222 pages
Genres: Science & Math, History. Non-fiction

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So argues historian Fernández-Armesto (The Americas, 2003, etc.), suggesting that science and philosophy have combined in the last two generations to blur hitherto hard-and-fast distinctions between human beings and other primates, thus undermining “our traditional concept of humankind.” Genetici...

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