After 3.8 billion years humankind is about to start evolving by new rules…
From leading geopolitical expert and technology futurist Jamie Metzl comes a groundbreaking exploration of the many ways genetic-engineering is shaking the core foundations of our lives ― sex, war, love, and death.
At the dawn of the genetics revolution, our DNA is becoming as readable, writable, and hackable as our information technology. But as humanity starts retooling our own genetic code, the choices we make today will be the difference between realizing breathtaking advances in human well-being and descending into a dangerous and potentially deadly genetic arms race.
Enter the laboratories where scientists are turning science fiction into reality. Look towards a future where our deepest beliefs, morals, religions, and politics are challenged like never before and the very essence of what it means to be human is at play. When we can engineer our future children, massively extend our lifespans, build life from scratch, and recreate the plant and animal world, should we?
Passionate, provocative, and highly illuminating, Hacking Darwin is the must read book about the future of our species.
Publication date: April 23, 2019
Interviews and reviews
Advance praise for Hacking Darwin
“Whether you already run the whitewater of transhumanism or oppose changing one atom of any species, you will see we have a revolution in our midst — one of engineering genes, possibly surpassing the space, atomic, and electronic revolutions in its significance. It is a transformation we ignore at great risk. To help prepare us for what’s coming, Jamie Metzl guides us brilliantly down the twisting and ever-changing river of our genetic future in this important and thought-provoking book. Beyond the issues of efficacy and safety, he thoughtfully explores the ultimately more critical issues of diversity, equality, and respect for each other and our common humanity.”
— George Church, Professor of Genetics at Harvard Medical School and author of Regenesis
“In many ways, Jamie Metzl has been preparing Hacking Darwin for the last 20 years and his diligence shines through. Jamie is a gifted writer and his explanation of genetics are crisp, accurate, and wonderfully engaging. If you can only read one book on the future of our species, this is it.”
— Sanjay Gupta MD, bestseller author, neurosurgeon, and Emmy-award winning chief medical correspondent (CNN)
“Jamie Metzl possesses a nearly superhuman ability to take in vast amounts of research and synthesize it into disruptive, beautifully-wrought prose. To borrow a term from the book, Hacking Darwin is an intellectual masterbatortium — at once stimulating and consummately satisfying.”
— Dan Buettner, National Geographic Fellow and New York Times bestselling author of Blue Zones Solution and Blue Zones of Happiness
“Jamie Metzl’s Hacking Darwin is an outstanding guide to the most important conversation of our lives — how we humans will hijack our evolutionary process and transcend the limits of our own biology.”
— Ray Kurzweil, inventor and futurist, author of The Singularity is Near and How to Create a Mind
“Genetic technologies contain extraordinary promise — and breathtaking challenges — with the potential to change virtually every aspect of our lives. In the pages of Hacking Darwin, Jamie Metzl takes us on a critical journey through opportunities and obstacles on humanity’s greatest expedition: the exploration and re-imagining of what it means to be human.”
— Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles
“Jamie Metzl has written a personal, funny, unpretentious and ultimately deeply optimistic book about how the human race will transform itself through genomics. In his enthusiastic embrace of our technological future, Metzl gives voice to the adventure of biological discovery without losing sight of the risks. Hacking Darwin is a witty introduction to a wide variety of themes within genomics, and is at its most profound when imagining not just the science, but the social and geopolitical reactions that will accrue throughout the world. Metzl writes about real science with the flair of a science fiction writer, and in the process challenges us to begin a complex but necessary conversation about how humanity will evolve.”
— Robert C. Green, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine (Genetics), Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Broad Institute and Harvard Medical School
“This wildly exciting and highly accessible book kidnaps us on a ride to the future, demonstrating in thrilling detail how our species’ ability to transform and improve the genetic makeup of our offspring will explode over the course of our lifetimes and beyond. Even as a scientist working in the field of human longevity and genetics, this book blew my mind. It should be required reading for scientists, doctors, and anybody else whose life and those of their children will be touched by genetic technologies — which is just about all of us. Our world is changing rapidly, and we could have no better guide to the profound opportunities, challenges, and ethical complexities of the genetics revolution than Jamie Metzl.”
— Nir Barzilai M.D., The Rennert Chair of Aging Research Professor of Medicine and Genetics, Director of The Institute for Aging Research; The Glenn Center for the Biology of Human Aging; NSC of Excellence in the Biology of Aging (NIH). Albert Einstein College of Medicine
“Jamie Metzl’s Hacking Darwin should be required reading for business executive, scientists, worriers, and dreamers — for anyone interested in the future of science and humanity. Bit by bit, with wit and grace, he shows how we are rebuilding the very notion of what it means to be human, and how we will inevitably be changed in that process.”
— Debora Spar, author of The Baby Business and Baker Foundation Professor, Harvard Business School
“Humans taking control of human evolution is happening now and it could be the most significant thing we have done since we learned how to make and use fire. When history looks back on this period, it will not focus on the shiny objects that grab the attention of media today, but rather on the tech breakthroughs that Metzl explains in such clear language. Hacking Darwin is essential reading if you want to understand what will be seen as the most important thing happening in this epoch.”
— Richard A. Clarke, former White House National Security official and bestselling author of WARNINGS