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The Posthuman
ENGL 165EC - Spring 2003,  Rita Raley

Tue, 4/1
Introduction to the course

Thu, 4/3
Class canceled (Digital Cultures conference)

Readings Due: Watch Blade Runner (Dir. Ridley Scott, 1982)
The film is available for viewing in the Learning Lab in Kerr Hall. You may also rent it at all major video stores.

Tue, 4/8
Dystopian Visions

Readings Due: Blade Runner (Dir. Ridley Scott, 1982)
Mark Poster, "Robocop"Reader

Thu, 4/10
The Ironic Dream

Readings Due: Donna Haraway, "A Cyborg Manifesto"Reader

Recommended Readings: Cyborg Resources (Transcriptions Project, UCSB)

Tue, 4/15
Humans, Are They Really Necessary?

Readings Due: Norbert Wiener, "Men, Machines, and the World About" Reader
Metropolis (Dir. Fritz Lang, 1927)
The film is available for viewing in the Learning Lab in Kerr Hall. We are screening the Kino International version (2002).

Recommended Readings: Audio files -- Kraftwerk, The Man Machine ("The Robots" | "The Man Machine")Online
Andoid Eve (Critical Art Ensemble)
Transcriptions Cyborg Resource Page (UCSB)

Thu, 4/17
Promises of Monsters

Readings Due: Shelley Jackson, Patchwork Girl (available in the bookstore, the Transcriptions Studio, or from

Recommended Readings:
Prosthetic Bodies & Surgical Obscenity
Stelarc siteOnline (plans for the biotech ear project)
Orlan ("Carnal Art" | Art and Culture entry)

The Category of the Human
Tue, 4/22
Philosophical discourse on humanism

Posthumanism essay selections available on Electronic Reserve

Readings Due: Roland Barthes, "The Great Family of Man," Posthumanism (11-13)
Michel Foucault, from The Order of Things, Posthumanism (27-29)
Frantz Fanon, from The Wretched of the Earth, Posthumanism (26-29)
Selections from Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri, EmpireReader

Thu, 4/24
Michael Jackson's Face: Race & the Posthuman

Readings Due: Quentin Lee, "Cyborg Identity/Metamorphosis/Skin"Reader
Lisa Nakamura, "Head-Hunting on the Internet: Identity Tourism, Avatars, and Racial Passing in Textual and Graphic Chat Spaces"Reader

Tue, 4/29
Gender, Sex, and the Posthuman

Readings Due: Julian Dibbell, "A Rape in Cyberspace"Online
Shannon McRae, "Coming Apart at the Seams: Sex, Text, and the Virtual Body"Reader
Jean Baudrillard, "Prophylaxis and Virulence," Posthumanism (34-41); available on Electronic Reserve

Recommended Readings: Interview with Sandy Stone, "Sex and Death among the Cyborgs"Online

Series 2: Biotechnology & Informatics
Thu, 5/1
The History of the Present

Readings Due: Selections from N. Katherine Hayles, How We Became PosthumanReader

Recommended Readings: Alan Turing Page; Hans Moravec Page; John Conway's Game of Life; Game of Life (downloadable Windows application by Nicholas Gessler)

Tue, 5/6
Cloning & Transgenics

Readings Due: Jean Baudrillard, "The Final Solution: Cloning Beyond the Human and the Inhuman"Reader
Eduardo Kac, Transgenic "GFP Bunny"Online
The Fly (Dir. David Cronenberg, 1986)

Recommended Readings: Clones-R-Us (Dream Technologies International) | TranceNoizer | Biosphere 2 | Interview with William S. Burroughs and David Cronenberg

Thu, 5/8
'Our Inevitable Genetic Future'

Readings Due: Selections from Francis Fukuyama, Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology RevolutionReader

Tue, 5/13
Technologies of Reproduction

Readings Due: Michael Ryan, "Countdown to a Baby" (July 1, 2002)Reader

Recommended Readings: Society for Reproductive Anachronisms (Critical Art Ensemble) | Cyborg Babies: From Techno-Sex to Techno-Tots, eds., Robbie Davis-Floyd and Joseph Dumit

Thu, 5/15
War Machines

Readings Due: Manuel De Landa, War in the Age of Intelligent Machines
Paul Virilio, "The Sight Machine," from War and CinemaReader
Paul Rogers, "The Myth of the Clean War"Reader
Critical Art Ensemble, "The Coming of Age of the Flesh Machine" (pdf file)Online

Thu, 5/22

Readings Due: Richard Powers, Galatea 2.2

Recommended Readings: Synopsis of Ovid's Metamorphosis, Book 1

Tue, 5/27
AI, continued

Readings Due: Richard Powers, Galatea 2.2

Recommended Readings: Alan Turing, "Computing Machinery and Intelligence" Reader
John McCarthy, "What is Artificial Intelligence?"
Jeremy Douglass, "Machine Writing and the Turing Test"
The Turing Test Page (Ayse Pinar Saygin; CogSci, UCSD)
MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab and "Social Robots"
Video Games, Toys, Robotic Pets, and Entertainment (American Association for Artificial Intelligence)
Forum on Ethical Implications of AI

Thu, 5/29
Networked Subjects & Embodiment

Readings Due: Allucquere Roseanne Stone, "Virtual Systems"Reader
Gerfried Stocker, "FleshFactor Opening Statement" | Dinka Pignon, "FleshFactor: theoretical ghosts"Online
Blogs & Journals: Blogger | War Blogs | The Agonist | LiveJournal | DeadJournal | Xanga | Diaryland Online

Recommended Readings: Julian Dibbell, "Portrait of the Blogger as a Young Man" | robot wisdom weblog Online

Tue, 6/3
Biotech & ALife Art

Readings Due: Oliver Grau, "Evolution," Virtual Art: From Illusion to ImmersionReader
Critical Art Ensemble, "BioTech Projects"Online

Recommended Readings: National Human Genome Research Institute | Christa Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau | Karl Sims, Galápagos | Berndt Lintermann, SonoMorphis | Artificial Life Evolutionary Models

Thu, 6/5
Sound Machines

Readings Due:
Audio Files
Christof Migone, Crackers (Track03 | Track05)
Matmos, A Chance to Cut is a Chance to Cure (lipostudio | ur tchun)
Maxime De La Rochefoucauld, Automates Ki (Pandore | Tell)
Pierre Bastien, Mecanoid (gnu lung)

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