Myth Called Us

Two parts of this text really intrigued me, first the potential and uses Haraway describes of new cyborg-centric narratives to inspire imagination and creative thinking away from the deeply embedded mythos of duality and destruction. This allows for a concept of female and feminine that is not defined by, that which is not masculine or what kinds of work women typically had done as these are really no longer sufficient for gender definitions. She argues against the common feminist tropes that are essentially the flip side of the phallocentric world view, a Goddess/Mother model. This she feels is not really capable of inclusiveness of all the experiences of female (and male) identity that are present today and emerging due to technology and science. I agree with Haraway that this outlook inspires new narratives that cultures look to for how to live in accord with technology rather than fear.

The second issue Haraway’s manifesto brings to the fore, is the issue of responsibility. Once you identify that you are interconnected with the machine and that you control it you must take responsibility for it. This is something unfortunately missing from most discussions on technology outside of a specific ethical forums, I can only assume because it is a direct affront to highly funded Big Science. If we affirm that we are part of the machine and that we are conscious beings then we can no longer keep discussions of social consequences delimited to special situations only.

I found these two issues still very relevant to contemporary discussions on technoculture. Perhaps Haraway’s once radical take might now be seen as a pragmatic approach as technology intersects and intertwines in our lives more and more each day.

A few thoughts:

Are we not crafting cyborg identities as we freely forge and maintain relationships by distributing our personalities via social networks and mobile devices?

Will this techno-positive and responsible approach seem obvious to those growing up now?

Whom does this favor and disfavor? Seems like this is hard to buy into for some as it renders certain distinctions impotent and creates a lot of gray areas.

Anyone else read Sadie Plant’s book Zeros + Ones?


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