Decapitated Monarchs, Thermonuclear Monarchs and the Future of Artificial Intelligence

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In his seminal work The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas Kuhn coined the term “paradigm shift” to describe a fundamental change in a scientific discipline. I use Kuhn’s structure of paradigm shifts and apply it to fundamental changes in political subjectivity. Such changes arise due to socio-political events such as the French Revolution, or to technological advances such as the development of the atomic bomb. My presentation takes the prospect of Artificial General Intelligence as a prompt to critically analyze readings of 19th century conservative political theorist Edmund Burke, who offers important ideas for how we should orient ourselves towards this potential and impending paradigm shift.