Seminar: Dr Felicitas Kraemer, 'Emotional enhancement'

Past Event

16 February 2011, 4:00pm - 5:30pm

Lecture Theatre, Oxford Martin School
34 Broad Street (corner of Holywell and Catte Streets), Oxford, OX1 3BD

Dr Felicitas Kraemer (Technische Universiteit Eindhoven)

Respondent: Alexandre Erler

Abstract: Some transhumanist authors, among them Nick Bostrom, support the technological enhancement of our emotional life. In this presentation, I will shed critical light on the new technological enhancement of our emotions by arguing that it not only gives rise to severe risks and dangers, but is also based on a problematic account of our emotions.First, I will elucidate why the uncritical and unlimited enhancement of emotions via technological means falls short of recognizing the complexity and subtlety of our emotional life. Second, I will argue that changing our emotions means changing our standards of normativity, something which can bring about problematic consequences. I will defend the view that any attempt to enhance our emotions will have to deal with questions such as the one of the appropriateness of our emotions.

Bio: Felicitas Kraemer is an assistant professor at the Department of Philosophy & Ethics at Eindhoven University of Technology (the Netherlands). She is interested in metaethical topics such as neosentimentalism, and in biomedical ethics, especially neuroethics. She holds a doctoral degree in philosophy from the University of Heidelberg (Germany). Before coming to Eindhoven, she taught at a number of German universities and was a visiting scholar at Boston University and the University of Pittsburgh.