Spring Term, Session 1: Posthumanism (Monday 31st January)

Where does the 'human' end and the 'non-human' begin? Have we entered a 'posthuman' age, or were we ever really 'human' in the first place? What implications can a questioning of the 'human' have for gender, race, age, disability and ethics?

The general theme for this term's Literary and Critical Theory Seminars is 'The Idea of the Human', and our first session will be on the topic of 'posthumanism'. It will take place from 6-8pm on Monday 31st January in Senate House, room 103 (1st Floor). The readings are as follows:

  • Donna Haraway - 'A Cyborg Manifesto', in Simians, Cyborgs and Women: The Reinvention of Nature (New York; Routledge, 1991), pp.149-181.
  • N. Katherine Hayles - 'Unfinished Work: From Cyborg to Cognisphere', in Theory, Culture & Society, 2006 vol. 23: 159-166.

The session will begin with a paper by
Louise LePage (PhD candidate and Visiting Lecturer in Drama at Royal Holloway, University of London). Louise's project aims to critically explore the identity and form of ‘the human’ in its representations as dramatic characters via an interrogation of its traditional borders with animals, machines, and the nonphysical (mind, ghosts, etc.). Her study adopts Donna Haraway’s cyborg as a trope to open up a posthumanist way of seeing and approaching identity, which re-constitutes the self as composed of multiple parts - natural and cultural - that extend beyond the borders of the skin to formulate an inherently provisional and protean identity and entity.

All are welcome to attend.

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like a fantastic event, and so very relevant to the novel I'm working on. Unfortunately my Creative Writing seminar is taking place at that time, so I won't be able to attend! :(