Cover

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Title Page

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Copyright Page

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Contents

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pp. v-vii

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Preface

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p. ix

This book has been a long time in the writing and I owe thanks to the people who have helped, read, and been willing to discuss. First, I need to acknowledge, gratefully, Kitty Moore who originally read my proposal and responded with a contract...

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1. Introduction

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pp. 1-24

Although every year sees a new flock of science fiction (sf) movies populate movie screens with aliens, spaceships, androids, cyborgs, and other assorted monsters, the genre has, until lately, largely been neglected...

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2. Dangerous Science

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pp. 25-63

This chapter is designed to do a number of things. I start with a working definition of what an sf movie is, then move on to profile the three most important sf stock characters: the Hero or Honest Joe/Jane, the Scientist, and the Monster...

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3. Meanwhile, Back in the Kitchen; or, Women and Science

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pp. 64-83

Here Nietzsche intends to praise woman for her constancy, her healing, life-giving, but basically uncreative "nature." This image of woman as being rooted in nature, with culture being just a varnish, is ingrained in...

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4. Humanoids in the Toolshed

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pp. 84-117

The quote from Finney and Jones makes the genocide of 25 million Native Americans2 and of thousands of Aboriginal Australians not only acceptable but also inevitable. Humans are "exploring animals" who cover continents...

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5. In the Belly of the Beast

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pp. 118-131

Fictional science and genius scientists are important ingredients of sf. But at the core is the interplay between science's most profitable invention, the machine, and the human beings who have to operate them...

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6. Disembodied Brains

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pp. 132-149

The machines that daunt the "little tramps" are mindless—strictly nuts and bolts and belts moving things along. They do not solve problems and figure things out. They replace manual labor. That was very much what machines were...

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7. Docile Bodies

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pp. 150-165

Computers do not fare well in sf movies because they're not photogenic. Computers are, however smart and silky voiced, never really cute. They are machines with square metallic surfaces, gauges, controls, lamps, and screens blinking...

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8. Intrusive Media

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pp. 166-186

Speaking of "docile" bodies is of course pure metaphor. What power needs and wants is docile minds. Smart, fast, knowledgeable, utterly obedient minds inside strong, pliable, enduring, and beautiful bodies. Sf is full...

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9. The Dystopia

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pp. 187-195

The dystopias presented in the previous chapter used communication technology as their primary or sole means of control. Below, we shall encounter dystopias that enslave humans through a "science of fear." The three movies...

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10. The Human Form Submerged, Beleaguered, and Triumphant

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pp. 196-213

In this chapter we will encounter radical routes to creating humanlike forms that are but human in name: genetic engineering used to create perfect and perfectly docile beings; or docility secured by submerging the core...

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11. Have Mind, Seek Soul: The Android's Quest

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pp. 214-240

The final link in my "plot chain"—the denouement, if you will— is the point where the boundary between human and machine has finally become so blurred that there no longer is a difference between the two. In...

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12. Conclusion

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pp. 241-244

In the quotation above, Giuliano Bruno refers specifically to the replicants of Blade Runner, but the truth of the matter is, of course, that the androids are stand-ins for us, for the human race. Power, meaning the New World Order...

Bibliography

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pp. 245-251

Filmography

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pp. 253-269

Index

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pp. 271-279