Human Machines and Fleshy Robots in Science Fiction and Film
Instructor: Nick Laudadio
multitude of subgenres, methodologies, and mannerisms, much of science
fiction relies on a few basic tropes: most notably other worlds, other
times, and simply others. In this class we will attempt to build a focused
history of SF by emphasizing that last, most contentious theme, the
notion of the other body, built by (or from) the human. We will deal in particular with the mechanical being and the consistent attempt to both fabricate "life" or "consciousness" by technological means and to extend the senses and structures of the human body mechanically. In order to accomplish
this, we will work through a number of novels, short stories and films that depict the ediated/mechanical human body in science fiction and science fact.
Some texts we may consider:
Brian Aldiss' "Supertoys Last All Summer Long,"
Philip K. Dick's "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?,"
Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein,"
Tetsuo: "The Iron Man,"
"The Day The Earth Stood Still,"
as well as
other sources texts and critical materials.
NB: While this course will display a healthy respect for tremendously popular SF series such as Star Trek and Star Wars, our concentration here will be on exploring other less-well-known texts and films.
Last Update: October 27, 2004