Re: "Post-humanism": The right term?

Max More (
Fri, 13 Aug 1999 11:47:31 -0700

At 10:12 AM 8/13/99 -0700, Brian wrote:
>That's not a lot to chew on, but that sums it up pretty well. To put my
>objections to both "post-" and "trans-humanism" somewhat turgidly: The
>itself is already the permanent "self-post-ing" of what we are (the
>"self-overcoming beast," to sound Nietzschean and/or Aristotelian). To be
>post-human would thus amount almost to being "post-post-human" -- not
>I want to be (assuming no state of perfection is possible). "Trans-human"
>mean moving towards adding that second "post-." Who needs it?
>So, again, I wonder: why not "human," and "humanism," or some ratcheting
>up of the same: like "neo-humanism," or "ultra-humanism"?

My own similar thinking about this terms was the reason for my testing the waters with the term "ultrahuman" in my talk at Extro 4. I have still seen only a small amount of feedback on the term, so don't yet have a good sense of how people in our community respond to the term. I'm also especially interested in how people outside our community respond to "ultrahuman" and "ultrahumanism" compared to "posthuman" and "transhuman".

As I stressed in my talk, "The Ultrahuman Revolution: Amendments to the Human Constitution", we can make a strong case that we are not doing away with humanity, but refining it and augmenting it, building on our finest qualities. This also helps to address the "it's not natural" objection by arguing that it's central to human's nature to change nature.

I'm glad you quoted the FAQ definition. I will want to remove the term "posthuman" from that definition, though I will wait until I have a better sense of the responses to "ultrahuman".


Max More, Ph.D.
<> or <>

Implications of Advanced Technologies
President, Extropy Institute: EXTRO 4 Conference: Biotech Futures. See