Neuromancer
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Neuromancer. By William Gibson. Introduction. Genre: Cyber noir thriller Corporate and Military Hegemony Gender Analysis Anti-heroism and Cyberpunk AI as Self-Directed Conclusion. Interview with William Gibson. Genre: Cyber Noir Thriller.

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Neuromancer

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Neuromancer

Neuromancer

By William Gibson


Introduction

Introduction

  • Genre: Cyber noir thriller

  • Corporate and Military Hegemony

  • Gender Analysis

  • Anti-heroism and Cyberpunk

  • AI as Self-Directed

  • Conclusion

Interview with William Gibson


Genre cyber noir thriller

Genre: Cyber Noir Thriller

  • Physically, morally and spiritually dark, morbid and violent.

  • Futuristic urban decay.

  • Fast-action in the “real world” as well as in “the matrix”— a cyberspace “consensual hallucination” (51).

  • AI as dominant characters and motivational forces.


Corporate and military hegemonies

Corporate and Military Hegemonies

  • Hegemony refers to domination by consent, a theme marked from the characters’ actions through the AI to the general populace under corporate and military control.

  • Set in Chiba City Japan, the Sprawl (BAMA USA), Istanbul (Eastern European decay and old decadence), and Freeside (a space station “free” state owned by the Tessier-Ashpools--a corporate family).

  • Most people enjoy the conveniences and pleasures provided by capitalism whereas the Zionites isolate themselves from “Babylon.”


Gender analysis

Gender Analysis

  • Ambiguous in terms of its presentation of women.

  • Although the male characters tend to see the women as “meat,” women are depicted as self-sufficient, intelligent, sexy, and independent of men.

  • Molly is the femme fatale, cyber-enhanced killing machine. She blocks out emotion (eyes cannot be penetrated).

  • Linda is the quintessential innocent turned victim.

  • Marie-France and Lady3Jane are beautiful, articulate, intelligent, but used by the AI. Marie-France is murdered by her husband (strangled in bed—and captured on video) (229).


Anti heroism and cyberpunk

Anti-heroism and Cyberpunk

  • Case is self and other destructive

  • “Fueled by self-loathing” (262).

  • Case uses the women in his life (as “meat”).

  • No real answer to the question who does he love?

  • Never sees Molly again and dates a woman “who call[s] herself ‘Michael’” (270). Signals the lack of human connection in a world driven by cyberspace and corporate agendas.

  • Case as antihero merges with the mathematical mind of the AI, but not with inner emotion (258-9).


Ai as self directed

AI as Self-Directed

  • Wintermute is logic.

  • Neuromancer is personality.

  • Their agenda is to merge “minds” and become a hybrid new entity—fully integrated.

  • The matrix becomes conscious and independent.

  • This new entity contacts others like itself on distant worlds (Centauri System).

VirtualMatrix.org


Conclusion

Conclusion

  • Cyberpunk presents ambiguous images of the future.

  • Urban development has destroyed the natural world.

  • Space becomes the new home of corporate hegemony.

  • The future is in the “hands” of AI—taking a course potentially independent from human destiny.


Conclusion continued

Conclusion continued

  • The AI now has a “mind” that transcends human consciousness and incorporates all information and knowledge of the matrix within itself including a holographic “recording” of humans like Linda Lee and Case himself.

  • “Where do we go from here? …Tonight the very matrix asks itself that question” (259).

Imageworks: final version

Johnny Mnemonic


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