2 Matching Annotations
  1. Mar 2023
    1. I do think Haraway could have written it in a much more approachable way. The manifesto is using cyborg as a symbol of boundary transgression. So many binary relations are broken down, that of human and animal, men and women, organism and machine, physical and non-physical, reality and culture, the mortal and immortal, because a cyborg could be both. Overall this piece of writing causes more anxiety in me than elation. When the boundaries between human and animal, organism and machine, mortal and immortal all been broken down, what would befall humanities? What changes would it bring to literature writing/studies? It’s been normally agreed that literature is about human conditions, but what becomes literature when human beings in its original sense, which is dismantled by the cyborg myth, won’t exist? The piece is also an attack against traditional feminist position. The idea of a cyborg is supposed to dissolve differences and hierarchies based on gender, race. What about age and class? Wouldn't cyborgs become most efficient capitalist war machines, colonial instruments? Isn’t the concept of “cyborg” itself a hegemonic idea that exclude those who don’t have access to technology? In China, people without a smart phone can’t book a taxi, order takeouts, make a payment in certain business areas, or even enter any public space during the pandemic control period. What about those women, who haven’t gained equal status as a human being in the Enlightenment sense, suddenly being forced into a posthuman era? Isn’t this a violent erasing of the oppression and struggles those women have suffered and endured? Isn’t this breaking down of boundaries often the cause rather than the way out of our sense of dislocation and identity crises?

  2. Jun 2015
    1. One of the women in the Australian Shepherd breed is C.A. Sharp, she got her BA in RTF, has no formal genetics education, works as an accountant, was a breeder of Australian Shepherds who have nothing to do with Australia, they’re actually Western U.S. ranch dogs, they’re only called Australian through the Basque Sheep herders who immigrated to Australia during the same period. Sharp is an activist in the breed, and as a lay-activist publishes the Double Helix Network News, which organizes the breed interest in genetic health and disease issues. She and a friend organized a series of test-breedings around a certain eye disease which she was quite certain Australian Shepherds were subject to but which vets and geneticists denied. They designed an excellent data set to prove a point and then solicited a scientist to publish it under his name so that it could become a fact in the literature. There is a very savvy manipulation of scientific credibility in this story. It was also very clear that to make a fact a fact in an effective way, that is to say something that people will act on, requires also the emotional support system that would allow a breeder the chance not to feel stigmatized by the genetic disease of his or her dog. Thus, the emotional economy of the stabilization of a fact was also quite deliberately engaged as part of the work of doing genetics in this breed. It’s a complex sociality: the research design, the mating design, the alliance with veterinary opthamologists, with biochemical geneticists, with people who will form support groups, the alliance with the breed group movers and shakers to get a certain degree of openness. I was fascinated by the management of the material culture of making a fact whole, namely that these dogs are subject to this eye anomaly and that an action has to be taken. The kind of everyday story of what constitutes a fact, its literary material and social technologies is in Sharp’s practice in an extremely interesting way.

      This is terrifically well limned; I want to put this lens to any number of situations in which facts are made and used, especially around the way trees are done by botanists, arborists, and gardeners.