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Through a unique mix of fact, opinion and fiction, Post Human Conditions explores the world’s greatest, strangest, and most unpredictable invention: the human being.

This notorious species just can’t seem to stop interfering with itself. What is it trying to achieve? What will it become?

Paul McAuley, Jeff VanderMeer, Nick Harkaway and newcomer T.D. Edge provide some compelling answers, in stories that explore the playfulness as well as the pathos of the human condition, while features by Anne Galloway, Regina Peldszus and Gord Sellar map the boundaries of human possibility. Will we ever be able to talk to the animals? How will we weather the tedium of deep space? And why do today’s most forward-looking people refuse to talk about the future?

Also in Post human conditions, Sonja Vesterholt explains how the utopian designs of a long-forgotten Soviet filmmaker inspired some of the most frightening films Hollywood ever made; Holly Gramazio kicks a ball about, Kyle Munkittrick” goes on a guilt trip and PD Smith is pelted with oranges.

CONTENTS

EDITORIAL: What will we be tomorrow? ( )
Simon Ings & Sumit Paul-Choudhury

FORWARD: The future’s mine ( )
Frederik Pohl

How we think about the future, shapes the future — and the last of Gernsback’s greats says we should be careful what we wish for

PRESENT TENSE: Nobody knows you’re a dog (+)
Anne Galloway & Sumit Paul-Choudhury

The internet is sending feelers through the animal kingdom. Is this a new way of looking at life on earth - or just another vanity mirror for humans?

SHORT STORY: Attenuation (+)
Nick Harkaway

Sonny Hall lived fast, died young and left a beautiful corpse. And that’s when his troubles really began

PRIOR ART: Petersburg’s Prometheus (+)
Sonja Vesterholt & Simon Ings

For 20 years, unemployable Russian filmmaker Pavel Klushantsev led a life of loneliness and obscurity, unaware of a Hollywood campaign to track down “the Red Kubrick”.

SHORT STORY: The Man (+)
Paul McAuley

Why did he come to this hardscrabble human settlement, unannounced, unequipped, without purpose, without desire? Come to think of it - why did they?

INNER SPACE: Through the Deep Space Desert (+)
Regina Peldszus

Humanity is about to embark on the longest, most tedious round-trip ever. Fretful passenger Regina Peldszus asks, “Are we there yet?”

SHORT STORY: Big Dave’s in Love (+)
T.D. Edge

Poor Dave: somewhere under all those vodka mallows beats a lover’s heart. And Jack had better find it, fast, before the sludge arrives.

TOMORROW PROJECT: Help shape the future (+)

The second Arc/Tomorrow Project short story competition is underway. Come join the conversation

UNEVENLY DISTRIBUTED: The Mudang’s dance (+)
Gord Sellar

South Korea has gone from impoverished feudal backwater to liberal economic superpower in a generation — yet its people don’t talk about the future much. Do they know something we don’t?

SPACES: Built for Pleasure (+)
P.D. Smith

There are many serious and sober reasons why humanity has become a predominantly urban species - but it’s the silly ones that count.

PLAY: Adult pursuits (+)
Holly Gramazio

Treasure hunts and letterboxing, football and free-for-alls: these games engage entire communities. Can digital games compete?

GAMES: Bad vibrations (+)
Kyle Munkittrick

A game is like a dream: you have to be in it to understand it. So why do the best games put you in the last place you would ever want to be?

SHORT STORY: Komodo (+)
Jeff VanderMeer

Listen, child: there are no such things as angels, and the gods are taking us for a ride. But what a ride!

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