BookIT talk, The New Breed: What Our History with Animals Reveals about Our Future with Robots

UPDATE 3/8/21: This event is no longer taking place.


Join Chicago-Kent College of Law for an upcoming BookIT talk with Kate Darling, a researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab and a leading expert in robot ethics. Darling is the author of “The New Breed: What Our History with Animals Reveals about Our Future with Robots.” The virtual event will take place on March 12 from Noon- 1 p.m.

Registration for the event is required. A link to the online book talk will be sent to attendees the day before the event by 5 p.m. CST. Click here to register

About the book

For readers of The Second Machine Age or The Soul of an Octopus, a bold, exciting exploration of how building diverse kinds of relationships with robots—inspired by how we interact with animals—could be the key to making our future with robotic technology work.

There has been a lot of ink devoted to discussions of how robots will replace us and take our jobs. But MIT Media Lab researcher and technology policy expert Kate Darling argues just the opposite, and that treating robots with a bit of humanity, more like the way we treat animals, will actually serve us better. From a social, legal, and ethical perspective, she shows that our current ways of thinking don’t leave room for the robot technology that is soon to become part of our everyday routines. Robots are likely to supplement—rather than replace—our own skills and relationships. So if we consider our history of incorporating animals into our work, transportation, military, and even families, we actually have a solid basis for how to contend with this future.

A deeply original analysis of our technological future and the ethical dilemmas that await us, The New Breed explains how the treatment of machines can reveal a new understanding of our own history, our own systems and how we relate—not just to non-humans, but also to each other.

About the author

Dr. Kate Darling is a leading expert in robot ethics. She’s a researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab, a fellow at the Harvard Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, and a former fellow at the Yale Information Society Project. Darling’s work has been featured by the New Yorker, the Guardian, PBS, the Boston Globe, Wired, Slate, NPR, and more.

The event is sponsored by Chicago-Kent’s Center for Design, Law & Technology c∆, which promotes research, scholarship, and instruction at the intersection of creativity, technology, design, and the law.