Posthumanism in the Age of Humanism

Mind, Matter, and the Life Sciences after Kant

Author: Edgar Landgraf,Gabriel Trop,Leif Weatherby

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1501335685

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 352

View: 1980

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The literary and scientific renaissance that struck Germany around 1800 is usually taken to be the cradle of contemporary humanism. Posthumanism in the Age of Humanism shows how figures like Immanuel Kant and Johann Wolfgang Goethe as well as scientists specializing in the emerging modern life and cognitive sciences not only established but also transgressed the boundaries of the "human.†? This period so broadly painted as humanist by proponents and detractors alike also grappled with ways of challenging some of humanism's most cherished assumptions: the dualisms, for example, between freedom and nature, science and art, matter and spirit, mind and body, and thereby also between the human and the nonhuman. Posthumanism is older than we think, and the so-called "humanists†? of the late Enlightenment have much to offer our contemporary re-thinking of the human.

A Genealogy of Cyborgothic

Aesthetics and Ethics in the Age of Posthumanism

Author: Dongshin Yi

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1351962507

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 172

View: 9635

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In his provocative and timely study of posthumanism, Dongshin Yi adopts an imaginary/imaginative approach to exploring the transformative power of the cyborg, a strategy that introduces balance to the current discourses dominated by the practicalities of technoscience and the dictates of anthropocentrism. Proposing the term "cyborgothic" to characterize a new genre that may emerge from gothic literature and science fiction, Yi introduces mothering as an aesthetic and ethical practice that can enable a posthumanist relationship between human and non-human beings. Yi examines the cyborg's literary manifestations in novels, including The Mysteries of Udolpho, Frankenstein, Dracula, Arrowsmith, and He, She and It, alongside philosophical and critical texts such as Edmund Burke's A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origins of Our ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful, Immanuel Kant's Critique of Judgment, John Stuart Mill's Utilitarianism and System of Logic, William James's essays on pragmatism, ethical treaties on otherness and things, feminist writings on motherhood, and recent studies of posthumanism. Arguing humans imagine the cyborg in ways that are seriously limited by fear of the unknown and current understandings of science and technology, Yi identifies in gothic literature a practice of the beautiful that extends the operation of sensibility, heightened by gothic manifestations or situations, to surrounding objects and people so that new feelings flow in and attenuate fear. In science fiction, which demonstrates how society has accommodated science, Yi locates ethical corrections to the anthropocentric trajectory that such accommodation has taken. Thus, A Genealogy of Cyborgothic imagines a new literary genre that helps envision a cyborg-friendly, non-anthropocentric posthuman society. Encoded with gothic literature's aesthetic embrace of fear and science fiction's ethical criticism of anthropocentrism, the cyborgothic retains the prospective nature of these genres and develops mothering as an aesthetico-ethical practice that both humans and cyborgs should perform.

Human Nature in an Age of Biotechnology

The Case for Mediated Posthumanism

Author: Tamar Sharon

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9400775547

Category: Philosophy

Page: 241

View: 3367

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New biotechnologies have propelled the question of what it means to be human – or posthuman – to the forefront of societal and scientific consideration. This volume provides an accessible, critical overview of the main approaches in the debate on posthumanism, and argues that they do not adequately address the question of what it means to be human in an age of biotechnology. Not because they belong to rival political camps, but because they are grounded in a humanist ontology that presupposes a radical separation between human subjects and technological objects. The volume offers a comprehensive mapping of posthumanist discourse divided into four broad approaches—two humanist-based approaches: dystopic and liberal posthumanism, and two non-humanist approaches: radical and methodological posthumanism. The author compares and contrasts these models via an exploration of key issues, from human enhancement, to eugenics, to new configurations of biopower, questioning what role technology plays in defining the boundaries of the human, the subject and nature for each. Building on the contributions and limitations of radical and methodological posthumanism, the author develops a novel perspective, mediated posthumanism, that brings together insights in the philosophy of technology, the sociology of biomedicine, and Michel Foucault’s work on ethical subject constitution. In this framework, technology is neither a neutral tool nor a force that alienates humanity from itself, but something that is always already part of the experience of being human, and subjectivity is viewed as an emergent property that is constantly being shaped and transformed by its engagements with biotechnologies. Mediated posthumanism becomes a tool for identifying novel ethical modes of human experience that are richer and more multifaceted than current posthumanist perspectives allow for. The book will be essential reading for students and scholars working on ethics and technology, philosophy of technology, poststructuralism, technology and the body, and medical ethics.

Alien Chic

Posthumanism and the Other Within

Author: Neil Badmington

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134388896

Category: Social Science

Page: 224

View: 352

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Alien Chic provides a cultural history of the alien since the 1950s, asking ourselves why our attitudes to aliens have shifted from fear to affection, and what this can tell us about how we now see ourselves and others. Neil Badmington explores our relationship with aliens, inscribed in films such as The War of the Worlds, Mars Attacks!, Mission to Mars and Independence Day; and how thinkers such as Descartes, Barthes, Freud, Lyotard and Derrida have conceptualised what it means to be human (and post-human). Alien Chic examines the the concept of posthumanism in an age when the lines between what is human and what is non-human are increasingly blurred by advances in science and technology, for example genetic cloning and engineering, and the development of AI and cyborgs. Questioning whether our current embracing of all things 'alien' - in the form of extraterrestrial gadgets or abduction narratives, for instance - stems from a desire to reaffirm ourselves as 'human', this is an original and thought-provoking contribution to the study of posthumanism.

Posthumanism

Author: Pramod K. Nayar

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0745688578

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 208

View: 3657

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This timely book examines the rise of posthumanism as both a material condition and a developing philosophical-ethical project in the age of cloning, gene engineering, organ transplants and implants. Nayar first maps the political and philosophical critiques of traditional humanism, revealing its exclusionary and ‘speciesist’ politics that position the human as a distinctive and dominant life form. He then contextualizes the posthumanist vision which, drawing upon biomedical, engineering and techno-scientific studies, concludes that human consciousness is shaped by its co-evolution with other life forms, and our human form inescapably influenced by tools and technology. Finally the book explores posthumanism’s roots in disability studies, animal studies and bioethics to underscore the constructed nature of ‘normalcy’ in bodies, and the singularity of species and life itself. As this book powerfully demonstrates, posthumanism marks a radical reassessment of the human as constituted by symbiosis, assimilation, difference and dependence upon and with other species. Mapping the terrain of these far-reaching debates, Posthumanism will be an invaluable companion to students of cultural studies and modern and contemporary literature.

The Posthuman Body in Superhero Comics

Human, Superhuman, Transhuman, Post/Human

Author: Scott Jeffery

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137549505

Category: Social Science

Page: 264

View: 850

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This book examines the concepts of Post/Humanism and Transhumanism as depicted in superhero comics. Recent decades have seen mainstream audiences embrace the comic book Superhuman. Meanwhile there has been increasing concern surrounding human enhancement technologies, with the techno-scientific movement of Transhumanism arguing that it is time humans took active control of their evolution. Utilising Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of the rhizome as a non-hierarchical system of knowledge to conceptualize the superhero narrative in terms of its political, social and aesthetic relations to the history of human technological enhancement, this book draws upon a diverse range of texts to explore the way in which the posthuman has been represented in superhero comics, while simultaneously highlighting its shared historical development with Post/Humanist critical theory and the material techno-scientific practices of Transhumanism.

Posthuman Suffering and the Technological Embrace

Author: Anthony Miccoli

Publisher: Lexington Books

ISBN: 0739126334

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 141

View: 8570

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Posthuman Suffering investigates the core assumptions of posthumanist discourse via philosophy, cultural studies, psychoanalytic theory, and close textual and filmic readings of Thomas Pynchon's The Crying of Lot 49, Don DeLillo's White Noise and Steven Spielberg's film, AI: Artificial Intelligence, bringing the more ontological and epistemological implications of posthumanism to the forefront. In the age of technology our own limitations are legitimized as unique to the human condition.

Architectural Principles in the Age of Cybernetics

Author: Christopher Hight

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134173849

Category: Architecture

Page: 248

View: 2983

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A theoretical history of anthropomorphism and proportion in modern architecture, this volume brings into focus the discourse around proportion with current problems of post-humanism in architecture alongside the new possibilities made available through digital technologies. The book examines how the body and its ordering has served as a central site of architectural discourse in recent decades, especially in attempts to reformulate architecture’s relationship to humanism, modernism and technology. Challenging some concepts and categories of architectural history and situates current debates within a broader cultural and technological context, Hight makes complex ideas easily accessible. Extensively illustrated and written without academic jargon for an informed but non-specialized architectural audience, this book elucidates the often obscure debates of avant-garde architectural discourse and design, while demonstrating how these debates have affected everyday places and concepts of architecture. As a result, it will appeal to professional architects, academics and students, combining as it does an insightful introduction to the fundamental issues of architectural history and theory over the past fifty years with entirely new formulations of what that history is and means.

Eve

The Empyrean Age

Author: Tony Gonzales

Publisher: Hachette UK

ISBN: 0575085819

Category: Fiction

Page: 528

View: 6666

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A man wakes, trapped inside a cloning vat. He has no idea how he got there, no idea where he is, and no idea who he is. But someone is trying to kill him, and they're about to succeed ... A disgraced Foreign ambassador leaves his post humiliated, and ignored by his superiors, only to meet Ameline - a woman who seems to know everything about him, and an alarming amount about a conspiracy to overthrow the government. And on a back-water world during an economic crisis a worker called Tibus Heth leads a revolt against the corporation which earns him an unexpected and mysterious ally with astounding influence, and an inclination to aid his revolutionary ideas ...

An Introduction to Animals and Visual Culture

Author: R. Malamud

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137009845

Category: Social Science

Page: 167

View: 9603

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A fascinating exploration of the way in which animals are 'framed' - contextualized, decontextualized - in contemporary visual culture. Written in a highly engaging style, this book challenges the field, dealing with some highly controversial aspects of animal exploitation and boldly examines material that is seldom discussed within animal studies.

How We Became Posthuman

Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics

Author: N. Katherine Hayles

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 9780226321394

Category: Philosophy

Page: 364

View: 1003

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In this age of DNA computers and artificial intelligence, information is becoming disembodied even as the "bodies" that once carried it vanish into virtuality. While some marvel at these changes, envisioning consciousness downloaded into a computer or humans "beamed" Star Trek-style, others view them with horror, seeing monsters brooding in the machines. In How We Became Posthuman, N. Katherine Hayles separates hype from fact, investigating the fate of embodiment in an information age. Hayles relates three interwoven stories: how information lost its body, that is, how it came to be conceptualized as an entity separate from the material forms that carry it; the cultural and technological construction of the cyborg; and the dismantling of the liberal humanist "subject" in cybernetic discourse, along with the emergence of the "posthuman." Ranging widely across the history of technology, cultural studies, and literary criticism, Hayles shows what had to be erased, forgotten, and elided to conceive of information as a disembodied entity. Thus she moves from the post-World War II Macy Conferences on cybernetics to the 1952 novel Limbo by cybernetics aficionado Bernard Wolfe; from the concept of self-making to Philip K. Dick's literary explorations of hallucination and reality; and from artificial life to postmodern novels exploring the implications of seeing humans as cybernetic systems. Although becoming posthuman can be nightmarish, Hayles shows how it can also be liberating. From the birth of cybernetics to artificial life, How We Became Posthuman provides an indispensable account of how we arrived in our virtual age, and of where we might go from here.

Science Fiction, Alien Encounters, and the Ethics of Posthumanism

Beyond the Golden Rule

Author: E. Gomel

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137367636

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 232

View: 5447

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Science Fiction, Alien Encounters, and the Ethics of Posthumanism offers a typology of alien encounters and addresses a range of texts including classic novels of alien encounter by H.G. Wells and Robert Heinlein; recent blockbusters by Greg Bear, Octavia Butler and Sheri Tepper; and experimental science fiction by Peter Watts and Housuke Nojiri.

Posthumanist Shakespeares

Author: S. Herbrechter,I. Callus

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137033592

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 261

View: 3429

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Shakespeare scholars and cultural theorists critically investigate the relationship between early modern culture and contemporary political and technological changes concerning the idea of the 'human.' The volume covers the tragedies King Lear and Hamlet in particular, but also provides posthumanist readings of other Shakespearean plays.

Posthumanism and Educational Research

Author: Nathan Snaza,John Weaver

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317668626

Category: Education

Page: 204

View: 6544

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Focusing on the interdependence between human, animal, and machine, posthumanism redefines the meaning of the human being previously assumed in knowledge production. This movement challenges some of the most foundational concepts in educational theory and has implications within educational research, curriculum design and pedagogical interactions. In this volume, a group of international contributors use posthumanist theory to present new modes of institutional collaboration and pedagogical practice. They position posthumanism as a comprehensive theoretical project with connections to philosophy, animal studies, environmentalism, feminism, biology, queer theory and cognition. Researchers and scholars in curriculum studies and philosophy of education will benefit from the new research agendas presented by posthumanism.

Representations of the Post/human

Monsters, Aliens and Others in Popular Culture

Author: Elaine L. Graham

Publisher: Manchester University Press

ISBN: 9780719054426

Category: Biotechnology

Page: 259

View: 3188

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This work draws together a wide range of literature on contemporary technologies and their ethical implications. It focuses on advances in medical, reproductive, genetic and information technologies.

New Dimensions of Doctor Who

Adventures in Space, Time and Television

Author: Matt Hills

Publisher: I.B.Tauris

ISBN: 0857722867

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 262

View: 5414

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The Doctor may have regenerated on many occasions, but so too has Doctor Who. Moving with the times, the show has evolved across fifty years. New Dimensions of Doctor Who brings together experts on the Doctors, on TV brands, bioethics, transmedia, and cultural icons to explore contemporary developments in the series’ music, design and representations of technology, plus issues of showrunner authority and star authorship. Putting these new dimensions into context means thinking about changes in the TV industry such as the rise of branding and transmedia storytelling. Along with its faster narrative pace, and producer/fan interaction via Twitter, ‘new Who’ also has a new home: Roath Lock Studios at Cardiff Bay. Studying the Doctor Who Experience in its Cardiff setting, and considering audience nostalgia alongside anniversary celebrations, this book explores how current Doctor Who relates to real-world spaces and times.

Cyborgs and Barbie Dolls

Feminism, Popular Culture and the Posthuman Body

Author: Kim Toffoletti

Publisher: I.B.Tauris

ISBN: 0857731785

Category: Social Science

Page: 224

View: 589

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Bringing a lively and accessible style to a complex subject, 'Cyborgs and Barbie Dolls' explores the idea of the ‘posthuman’ and the ways in which it is represented in popular culture. Toffoletti explores images of the posthuman body from goth-rocker Marilyn Manson's digitally manipulated self-portraits to the famous TDK ‘baby’ adverts, and from the work of artist Patricia Piccinini to the curiously ‘plastic’ form of the ubiquitous Barbie doll, controversially rescued here from her negative image. Drawing on the work of thinkers including Baudrillard, Donna Haraway and Rosi Braidotti, 'Cyborgs and Barbie Dolls' explores the nature of the human - and its ambiguous gender - in an age of biotechnologies and digital worlds.

Posthumanism

A Critical Analysis

Author: Stefan Herbrechter

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1780936907

Category: Philosophy

Page: 240

View: 8683

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What does it mean to be human today? The answer to this question, which is as old as the human species itself, is becoming less and less certain. Current technological developments increasingly erode our traditional humanist reflexes: consciousness, emotion, language, intelligence, morality, humour, mortality - all these no longer demonstrate the unique character and value of human existence. Instead, the spectre of the 'posthuman' is now being widely invoked as the 'inevitable' next evolutionary stage that humans are facing. Who comes after the human? This is the question that posthumanists are taking as their starting point. This critical introduction understands posthumanism as a discourse, which, in principle, includes everything that has been and is being said about the figure of the 'posthuman'. It outlines the genealogy of the various posthuman 'scenarios' in circulation and engages with their theoretical and philosophical assumptions and social and political implications. It does so by connecting the philosophical debate about the future of humanity with a range of texts, including examples from new media, popular culture, science and the media.