Abstract

Abstract:

The article analyzes Marge Piercy's cyborg novel, He, She and It (1991). Resonating with contemporary concerns about autism, men and masculinity, He, She and It is a feminist narrative that appropriates the popular science fiction trope of the autistic male human machine in order to critique patriarchal culture in late capitalist society. However, in her novel, Piercy's representation of disability is problematic because it perpetuates stereotypes of autism in order to portray men as damaged by patriarchy. Furthermore, in opposition to the damaging effects of patriarchy, Piercy draws upon the feminist science fiction trope of the male human machine/robot lover in order to propose the benefice of female intervention into men, masculinity, and patriarchal technology, in which men are rehabilitated and made amenable through an imagined alternate human machine personhood. The article critically evaluates the representation of disability in Piercy's cyborg narrative, arguing that although Piercy rather tantalizingly explores the value and utopian possibilities of her human machine's autistic difference, it is nonetheless a representation that is based upon an ableist feminist polemic of patriarchy in order to perfect the human male, which ultimately affirms Piercy's own explicit rejection of an autistic humanity.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1757-6466
Print ISSN
1757-6458
Pages
pp. 423-441
Launched on MUSE
2017-11-18
Open Access
No
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