Cyborgs in the garden: tales of Iden in Kage Baker's Company Series

Honey, Tania (2012) Cyborgs in the garden: tales of Iden in Kage Baker's Company Series. In: Unveiling the Posthuman, pp. 59-66. From: 6th Global Conference Visions of Humanity in Cyberculture, Cyberspace and Science Fiction, 12-14 July 2011, Mansfield College of Oxford, UK.

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Abstract

Within feminist cyborg theories and science fiction the cyborg can represent a shift in social and political ideas signifying the move from universal dualistic concepts to fluid and multiple notions of subjectivity. As many theorists have pointed out, our technologically saturated experiences can often be read in terms of science fiction reality where the schism between fiction and reality is blurred. Science fiction often adumbrates the social and political implications of anxieties surrounding technology and closely examines and challenges concepts of what it is to be human. Kage Baker's 'Company Series', a collection of narratives that centre upon immortal cyborgs, can be examined through the lens of feminist cyborg and SF theory. This paper will examine the first novel in this series, In The Garden of Iden (1997) and discuss how it may contribute to the emergent discourse of 'cyborg' identity and engage with current theoretical perspectives of subjectivity. The paper will focus on the novel's protagonist, Mendoza, an immortal cyborg woman placed in sixteenth century England to breed and collect rare botanic specimens to take back to the future. Baker's narrative highlights feminist concerns of spatial and temporal displacement, alienation, and systems of representation concerned with gender and cyborgs. Importantly, this paper will extrapolate, from an analysis of Mendoza, the interrogations of cultural/textual production that the figure of the cyborg promotes (or perhaps) facilitates in resistant and oppositional paradigms.

Item ID: 26578
Item Type: Conference Item (Refereed Research Paper - E1)
Keywords: cyborgs, science fiction, feminist theory, Kage Baker, The Garden of Iden
Additional Information:

Papers presented at 6th Global Conference Visions of Humanity in Cyberculture, Cyberspace and Science Fiction, which took place in the Mansfield College of Oxford, between the 12th and the 14th of July 2011.

ISBN: 978-1-84888-108-2
Date Deposited: 24 Apr 2013 03:53
FoR Codes: 20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2005 Literary Studies > 200525 Literary Theory @ 25%
20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2005 Literary Studies > 200526 Stylistics and Textual Analysis @ 25%
22 PHILOSOPHY AND RELIGIOUS STUDIES > 2203 Philosophy > 220306 Feminist Theory @ 50%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970121 Expanding Knowledge in History and Archaeology @ 50%
95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9502 Communication > 950203 Languages and Literature @ 50%
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