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Review: Rowan Fortune

What People Are Saying About The Virtuous Cyborg

The future is coming at us fast, and Chris Bateman is a masterful guide to the most urgent questions we face there. How will we do good in a future where nearly every action we take is in partnership with a machine, a robot, or an artificial intelligence that shapes, augments and reprograms our own ethics with a code we don't control? Can we tell the difference between the technologies that bring out the best in us, and the ones that bring out the worst? Will we be able to put up a collective resistance if we need to? I can see no better way to immerse yourself in the strange new dilemmas of the future than to read this wonderful, mind-bending book.

Jane McGonigal, Phd, author of New York Times bestsellers Reality is Broken and SuperBetter


The rise of cyber technology has presented humanity with many exciting possibilities, but also a number of pressing problems. We urgently need to examine our relationship with the tools we have created, or we might find ourselves adopting the machine mind-set by which these devices operate. In The Virtuous Cyborg, Chris Bateman highlights our often myopic view of the cyber networks we find ourselves living in, teasing out the underlying ethical issues with compelling clarity. Without straying into apocalyptic predictions of our impending cyber subjugation, Bateman casts a critical but optimistic eye on the important choices we must make in our relationship with the cybernetic tools we have created. It might just be the most important decision humanity has had to make since we first whittled a stick.

Justin Robertson, DJ, artist, and record producer


Online and offline worlds being inextricably connected, can there be any doubt that cybermischief is actively influencing events in the real world? Rather than a facile critique of the vices of cyberspace, Chris Bateman optimistically explores the potential for virtue in both the behaviour of technology and that of its users. Recognizing today's merging of online and offline life, Bateman's proposal of cybervirtue might be a clever way of sneaking a new gentler human spirit into society at large. Cyberspace is as good a place as any to start finding our way back to who we really are, and to who we can be.

Michaël Samyn, Tale of Tales


Bateman brings a fresh and vigorous philosophical voice to explore virtue theory and cyborgs, robots, and AI, including classical and cutting edge ethical debates. Philosophical arguments on every page are leavened with practical insights, including a richly layered comprehension of the business of the gaming (and new media) side of the digital era. Across ontological registers, as relevant to ‘real’ life and virtual reality, Bateman intercalates virtue ethics with the challenges of technological virtuosity. In addition, Bateman offers an informatively discursive or running list of endnote reference commentary: the notes are as rewarding as the main text in this well written and thoughtful book.

Babette Babich, Philosophy Professor at Fordham University and the University of Winchester