RE: Two Cultures (Was: Mind/Body dualism)

From: Helen Fowle (
Date: Thu Aug 16 2001 - 03:27:49 MDT

I thought I'd try putting my two pence worth in (I'm from the UK so cents is no good for me!)

In the area of technology and science the one big thing linking the two to the literary world is SF. In SF you've got the great battle of subjectivity and objectivity - the fact of science and the fiction of literature. Now perhaps this is where Hayles finds her problem - she looks for the posthuman in literature and science and has a hard time concretising her theories. 

Perhaps another problem is found in the contradictions of postmodern thought. The postmodernists seems to be grounded in subjectivity - the idea that there is no reality bar that which the person sees - hence their love of cyberspace. They love the idea of fractured and multiple identities and the idea of simulcra. Now these seem to go against many of the positivistic beleifs found in science in the last hundred years, it argues agianst rationalism, reason, objective fact and empirical proof. Whether postmodernism can ever be allied with science is something I'm unsure of - perhaps the technology of VR and cyberspace is the only way. The postmodernists are right at home here, and so it seems, are many of the extropians. Perhaps this is were the bridge will be made?

Any thoughts.....perhaps I'm way out of my league here, but at the very least it helps to keep my brain ticking over so it doesn't become reminscent of mush!


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