Homo Deus is one of the most provocative works of popular history published in recent years. It argues that the age-old scourges of humankind – famine, plague, and war – are all but vanquished. Immortality seems within reach. But at the same time, rapid advances in biotechnology and artificial intelligence may be bringing about the end of homo sapiens as a species and ushering in an era when a new species of superhuman dominates the world with god-like powers. The eclipse of homo sapiens calls into question many of the things we take for granted about the human condition: religion as we know it, humanism, equality, free will, the indivisible self, even belief in the soul. In this simultaneously utopic and dystopic vision of the future humans will be almost unrecognizable from their ancestors. Harari brings a highly original historian's perspective to debates about the relationship between humans and technology usually dominated by Silicon Valley tech entrepreneurs and computer engineers.

This is the first in our "Conversations in History" series of talks.