By Patricia Melzer

Although set in different worlds populated through alien beings, technological know-how fiction is a website the place people can critique and re-imagine the paradigms that form this international, from basics comparable to the intercourse and gender of the physique to international strength relatives between sexes, races, and countries. Feminist thinkers and writers are more and more spotting technology fiction's strength to shatter patriarchal and heterosexual norms, whereas the creators of technological know-how fiction are bringing new intensity and complexity to the style by means of attractive with feminist theories and politics. This publication maps the intersection of feminism and technological know-how fiction via shut readings of technological know-how fiction literature through Octavia E. Butler, Richard Calder, and Melissa Scott and the flicks "The Matrix" and the "Alien" sequence. Patricia Melzer analyzes how those authors and movies signify debates and ideas in 3 components of feminist suggestion: identification and distinction, feminist opinions of technology and expertise, and the connection between gender id, physique, and wish, together with the hot gender politics of queer wishes, transgender, and intersexed our bodies and identities. She demonstrates that key political parts form those debates, together with international capitalism and exploitative category family members inside of a growing to be overseas procedure; the influence of machine, commercial, and clinical applied sciences on women's lives and reproductive rights; and post-human embodiment as expressed via biotechnologies, the body/machine interface, and the commodification of wish. Melzer's research makes it transparent that feminist writings and readings of technological know-how fiction are a part of a feminist critique of present strength relatives - and that the alien structures (cyborgs, clones, androids, extraterrestrial beings, and hybrids) that populate post-modern technology fiction are as in all probability empowering as they're threatening.

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Extra resources for Alien Constructions: Science Fiction and Feminist Thought

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N. Katherine Hayles, in How We Became Posthuman (1999), further explores the potentials and limitations of the body’s relationship to technology. Hayles investigates the body’s dual reality of material experience and disembodied existence in cyberspace. In her examination of the history of computer theory, she is critical of the celebration of disembodiment as the 26 A LI E N C ON S T RU C T I O N S ultimately posthuman existence and insists on the importance of the body’s material reality as well as its discursive quality.

Time travel gives the story a fantastic framework not unlike those of magical realism. As in parts of Wild Seed, Butler fuses elements of the historical novel and the slave narrative to examine critically the historical development of contemporary racist structures. This, as Govan notes, deviates from the genre appropriation usually found in science fiction: ‘‘She has chosen to link science fiction not only to anthropology and history, via the historical novel, but directly to the Black American slavery experience via the slave narrative’’ (Govan, ‘‘Homage’’ 79).

Joseba Gabilondo warns in ‘‘Postcolonial Cyborgs: Subjectivity in the Age of Cybernetic Reproduction’’: ‘‘When Foucault proclaimed the death of ‘Man’ in 1966, he did not realize that capitalism does not get rid of its old technologies and apparatuses; instead it exports them to the Third World’’ (424). A feminist cyborg consciousness can only be I N TR O D U C TI O N 27 transgressive and oppositional when developed in a critique not only of sexual but also of racial and class difference. The cyborg’s relationship to technology is always ambivalent: histories of science and technology tell us that technology is never innocent and is most often developed in a patriarchal, militaristic, and imperial context.

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