New developments in life science and information science invite rigorous inquiries into what we mean by - and ascribe to - 'life'. This text provides a summary of the key technical and legal developments and an account of why these developments are so unsettling to established categories like 'human', 'technology', and 'nature'.
In five short chapters - that discuss spaces of life; theories of life; the industrialization of life; spaces of property; and new imaginaries -
- explains how research in biology and informational technology questions the division between human and animal, human and machine, bodies and data, cells and information
- provides an account vitalist and bio-philosophical thinking from Whitehead to Deleuze
- elucidates a new set of ideas and methods focused on complexity and emergence
The text outlines the principal themes with economy and directness; while the focus is on issues of active social concern - like stem cells research - which have stimulated theoretical and methodological developments in the humanities and social sciences. This will be of interest to a wide range of disciplines in the social sciences.