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Themesicon: navigation pathCyborg Bodiesicon: navigation pathMythical Bodies I

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species of animals who tend to form swarms and colonies, which makes them strategically superior to humans. And after all, the promise of a potential for liberation can also lie in a ‹loss of control› where the mechanisms of control represent oppression or at least restriction. It is precisely this potential that Donna Haraway highlights in her «A Cyborg Manifesto »: According to Haraway, cyborgs break with the tradition of a creation controlled and dominated by humans, a creation that refers to a genealogy of creators and creatures and in which neither the boundaries between humans and animals or between humans and machines, nor those between subjects and objects are clearly defined. [11] This erodes a number of classic dichotomies upon which the supremacy of the Western, white, male is traditionally based. Those who do not profit from traditional relations of power may find it much more appealing to discover cyborg potentials for themselves.

Interface gender

One of the interfaces at which the wish to breach the boundaries prescribed by the measure of humans and


the effectiveness of bonds with the measure of humans clash in a particularly striking way is gender. This can already be discerned in the two ‹boundaries› whose becoming permeable Haraway identifies as the condition for the emergence of cyborg configurations. [12] The ‹animal› is associated with the bond with sexuality and biological sex, which— as ‹instinctive› and ‹unbridled› is subject to the maxim of the survival of the species—both falls short of and transgresses what is considered to be the condition humana. The loss of the human ethos of a consciously regulated sexuality would at the same time be accompanied by an abandonment of control functions, which can be imagined as ‹liberating.› In contrast, the paradigms of the ‹technological›—and this already applies for automatons as well as machines, all the more for IT systems—seem to imply the promise of overcoming the bonds with body-gender reproduction. However, automatization can also imply a delegation or an abandonment of human functions of consciousness. The notion of a ‹sex machine› is equally compatible with the ‹animal› as well as the ‹technological.› Therefore with regard to the aspect of gender or

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