Flourishing Thought: Democracy in an Age of Data Hoards

Challenging the posthumanist canon that celebrates the preeminence of matter, Ruth Miller, in Flourishing Thought contends that what nonhuman systems contribute to democracy is thought. Drawing on recent feminist theories of nonhuman life and politics, Miller shows that reproduction and flourishing are not antithetical to contemplation and sensitivity. After demonstrating that processes of life and processes of thought are indistinguishable, Miller finds that four menacing accumulations of matter and information—global surveillance, stored embryos, human clones, and reproductive trash—are politically productive rather than threats to democratic politics. As a consequence, she questions the usefulness of individual rights such as privacy and dignity, contests the value of the rational metaphysics underlying human-centered political participation, and reevaluates the gender relations that derive from this type of participation. Ultimately, in place of these human-centered structures, Miller posits a more meditative mode of democratic engagement.

Miller’s argument has shattering implications for the debates over the proper use and disposal of embryonic tissue, alarms about data gathering by the state and corporations, and other major ethical, social, and security issues.


Book details

  • Authors:Ruth A. Miller
  • Publisher:University of Michigan Press
  • Publication date:August 17, 2016
  • ISBN-10:0472130102
  • ISBN-13:978-0472130108
  • Pages:240 pages
  • Format:pdf
  • Size:2.87Mb
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