Thursday, March 25, 2010

S0.3 Cyborgs' Escape from Ideology

"Social reality is lived social relations, our most important political construction, a world-changing fiction" (Haraway 149). A cyborg is "a fiction mapping our social and bodily reality" (150). Althusser defines ideology in a similar fashion: "the imaginary representation of the subject's relationship to his or her Real conditions of existence" (Jameson 353). Just as ideology is an imaginary representation of one's social circumstances a cyborg is a fiction that discusses one's social reality. Does this mean that cyborg=ideology?

In a later paragraph, Haraway discusses that the cyborg was born out of a world of dichotomies, politics, social conditions etc. : "[cyborgs] are illegitimate offspring of militarism and patriarchal capitalism, not to mention state socialism" (151); cyborgs are born out of ideology(ies). However, cyborgs "are exceedingly unfaithful to their origins" because they embody all of the dichotomies of a world based on ideology; Cyborgs are both machine and organism, social reality and fiction, etc. It seems that Haraway is trying to make an argument that cyborgs escape/revolt against ideology because it embodies all opposites (based in a world of ideology). Yet, it was also born out of ideology and maps "our social and bodily reality"?

My general question is what is the relationship between cyborgs and Althusser's ideology? How is the embodiment of dichotomies a way to escape ideology? Can ideology even be escaped?

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