In Part one, Section 1, the explaining the passage section of the final, I think it could be useful for us to respond to a passage from Bynum’s chapter. In this chapter, Bynum explains and dissects the many different wolf-human and metamorphosis stories that have existed throughout history. She displays the many differences between Ovid’s Lycaon and Marie’s Bisclavret towards the middle of the chapter. I found the following passage very thought-provoking and I think it lends itself very well to this section of the final.
“Whereas Ovid’s wolf carries traces of a former self on his skin, there is in Marie a suggestion of over and under, inner and outer, of a person under the shaggy wolf…” (Bynum 172).
(*In my opinion, there is a possibility that one might want to include the sentence that follows the above passage, simply for clarification, but I did not choose to include it here.)
I thought Jay’s presentation on Google Galaxy was a fascinating response to questions about technology we’ve considered in class. A lot of the scientific possibilities we’ve encountered throughout the semester have honestly been difficult for me to imagine, at least in a society that resemble ours. Within our lifetimes, I can’t imagine we’ll witness a harvesting of organs from clones like in Never Let Me Go or manufacturing of skin as seen in Oryx and Crake. However, it is conceivable to me that we may soon find ourselves utilizing tools very much like Google Galaxy. Continue reading
I really enjoyed Taylor’s documentary. It was really interesting to watch as these interviewees, when completely caught off guard by the nature of the puzzling questions, scrambled to come up with intelligent answers to some very perplexing concepts. When they were asked what they thought it means to be human, most of their answers mirrored ideas we’ve been studying throughout the semester. Some of the people interviewed actually were able to answer the questions thoughtfully even though they were put on the spot with a camera in their face. Of course, some answers were more insightful and complete than others, among the definitions given for what it means to be human were the ability to reason, possess a free will, to love, the capacity to feel empathetic, compassionate towards others, to set and pursue goals, and so forth. And then, there was that other guy. I’m not sure if he was camera shy, or maybe just a
This week’s creative presentations presented a lot of really interesting topics regarding the post human. Ashley’s presentation on Tuesday brought up some thought provoking concepts about the idea of prosthetic limbs and wheelchairs. I was one If the main opponents tothe argument of the post human still being considered human. However, one of the people being interviewed in the video made a point about an improvement of the human is still human. Therefore, a handicapped person’s wheelchair would be considered humanbecause it is simply an extension of the person. This really changed my viewing of where the human nonhuman line should be drawn. Technology that is used to enhance the human can still be considered human even though its still mechanized technology. I always was quick to write off human enhancing technology as post human concepts but I was intrigued by the idethat mumaybe nonhuman technology could still be human. It makes sense to me that technology used to aid human brings in completing basic human actions would definiteł still be considered human. In that same way, prosthetic limbs would still be also be considered human. Though that is more commonly accepted in today’s society. It occurred to me that if these prosthetic limbs can so obviously be categirized as human, why shouldn’t a wheelchair be the same way? Ashley’s presentation and video made these now obvious observations more relevant to me.
Though we all chuckled a little when one of the interviewees in Taylor’s documentary said that we had evolved as humans because of our anti slavery stance and child labor laws. However, it got me thinking. It wasn’t too long ago when a slave was counted as 3/5of a person, and children were simply seen as mini adults. Our idea of a person, or at least a person that deserves rights, as it seemed to make quite a change since even the 19th century.
As we come to the end of the semester, it’s natural to look back, and draw conclusions about the course as a whole. The dominant notion rattling around my head recently has been the idea that we’ve always been posthuman, or, since this is clearly a paradox, that posthumanism as a term is flawed.
So, in response to Julia’s presentation about the movie Zombie Honeymoon, it reminded a lot of what we have talked about in previous classes with the majority of the texts. The fact that love often gets mentioned, that a lot the texts have some kind of love story narrative, and that often the most human of characters are described as the characters who know how to love other people. Continue reading
Both presentations today, the presentation mimicking a future unveiling of a new and improved Google database and the presentation on hybridity in zombies, were very interesting. When we first started reading about werewolves in class, I wrote a blog post on the hybridity of vampires, and for my first paper I also wrote about the notion of the monster in novels such as Never Let Me Go. Continue reading
I found Adam’s presentation to be really interesting and quite enlightening. I’ve always thought of the posthuman in a strictly human embodiment way. After watching Battlestar Galactica, that began to seem like the normal thought of the posthuman. Even Hayles and Graham seem to talk about the future of technology terms of the human body.
Adam’s presentation on “Posthuman Poetics” and Zack’s on the state of his futuristic identity were interesting to me for their differences. As Adam demonstrated, any webpage, regardless of its appearance, is really a manifestation of designed coding. In relation, one future possibility we’ve discussed is a seemingly organic posthuman, only separated from the current model internally. Even today, there is no way of knowing for sure that a person has an artificial hip or a pacemaker, for example, without opening him or her up and seeing. Zack’s future human, on the other hand, was a visibly altered version of the current human. His model of the body had been improved not only on the inside, but outwardly as well. Continue reading