Stephen Cave


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Agent: Robert Kirby
Assistant: Kate Walsh


Stephen Cave was born in Cornwall back in the days when Stevie Wonder and Steely Dan were topping the charts. After a decade studying and teaching philosophy, he was awarded his PhD in metaphysics from the University of Cambridge in 2001. Before dedicating himself to writing, he made ends meet as a diplomat, negotiating international treaties on behalf of Her Majesty.

Stephen has since written essays, features and reviews on many philosophical, ethical and scientific subjects, from robot warriors to animal rights. He writes regularly for the Financial Times, and has also written for The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Guardian, Wired and others.

Stephen is an accomplished public speaker: his TED talk, for example, has been viewed over two million times. He is also a regular contributor on television, including for the BBC, PBS, CBC, and National Geographic, and on radio for BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio 4, Deutschlandradio Kultur, Österreichischer Rundfunk and many others.

His internationally acclaimed first book, IMMORTALITY: THE QUEST TO LIVE FOREVER AND HOW IT DRIVES CIVILIZATION, was published in English and other languages in spring 2012. He is currently writing on topics including human nature, free will and the future of good and evil.



Publication DetailsNotes


Who wants to live forever? According to Stephen Cave, we all do - every single one of us. And the evidence is all around. Eluding the Grim Reaper is humanity's oldest and most pervasive wish. But all our many strategies for defying death fall into four simple categories — the four paths to immortality. Ranging across continents and cultures, from ancient Egypt to cutting-edge laboratories, IMMORTALITY raises the curtain on what compels us humans to keep on going and whether we can keep on going forever.

“A must-read exploration of what spurs human ingenuity… Cave presents an extremely compelling case – one that has changed my view of the driving force of civilization as much as Jared Diamond did years ago with his brilliant book Guns, Germs and Steel.”
— S. Jay Olshansky, New Scientist

“An epic inquiry into the human desire to defy death – and how to overcome it… Cave meticulously follows the right path to the right conclusion, rightly stated.”
— Julian Baggini, Financial Times

“Thoughtful and beautifully clear.”
— John Gray, The New Statesman