Re: JD Bernal

From: Jim Fehlinger (
Date: Thu Mar 01 2001 - 04:34:33 MST

Jeff Davis wrote:
> The World, the Flesh & the Devil
> An Enquiry into the Future of the Three Enemies of the Rational Soul
> at:

Arthur C. Clarke mentioned this in the 1963 edition of _Profiles of
the Future_, in Chapter 18 "The Obsolescence of Man":

"[T]his is, perhaps, the moment to deal with a conception which
many people find even more horrifying than the idea that machines
will replace or supersede us. It is the idea... that they may
combine with us.

I do not know who first thought of this; probably the physicist
J. D. Bernal, who in 1929 published an extraordinary book of
scientific predictions called _The World, the Flesh, and the
Devil_. In this slim and long out-of-print volume (I sometimes
wonder what the sixty-year-old Fellow of the Royal Society now
thinks of his youthful indiscretion, if he ever remembers it)
Bernal decided that the numerous limitations of the human body
could be overcome only by the use of mechanical attachments or
substitutes -- until, eventually, all that might be left of
man's original organic body would be the brain."

Jim F.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Mon May 28 2001 - 09:59:39 MDT