Mercerism. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?. What is Mercerism?. The humans ‘religion’, which gives them something to believe in after the war. Wiber Mercer is a symbolic figure in their society, like God. Created by a Hollywood film-maker. What is the role of Mercerism in the novel?.
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
The humans ‘religion’, which gives them something to believe in after the war.
Wiber Mercer is a symbolic figure in their society, like God.
Created by a Hollywood film-maker
Mercerism is initially used in the novel to show how empathetic someone is. Many people follow Mercer by fusion in the empathy box and believe that by doing this they are being watched over etc. However, at the end of the novel Buster Friendly (an android himself) reveals that the whole Mercerism religion is fake and was created by Al Jarry, a Hollywood filmmaker. This shows that it is not empathy that divides humans and androids. Despite this revelation, strong followers still believe in Mercer and follow him, which shows the impact that Mercerism has had on their lives.
An alcoholic filmmaker from Hollywood who created…
Is respected and followed by those who fuse with him.
Is seen as a symbol to society, like God
Seen rising from the tomb world and climbing up a mountain during fusion.
Brings animals back to life
His contrasting character is…
Is an android TV show host
Both humans and androids follow his TV show, which eventually shows that it matters not the division of humans and androids and their acceptance in society.
Reveals the truth about Wilber Mercer and Mercerism (key scene, ch.18)
Rick Deckard~ special, bounty hunter
Roy Baty~ android
By providing us with such contrasting characters we can see how Mercerism effects the characters and their actions. The difference between Isidore and Roy highlights the ‘empathy’ factor in the novel to show the difference between humans and androids. Rick, a human bounty hunter, is able to do his job due to is little interest in Mercerism. However, as he progresses the more he doubts his actions and turns to Mercer for help. On P152/153 there is a key scene where Mercer tells Rick that although his job involves killing (un-empathic) and therefore wrong he should continue to do his job as he will be required to do wrong no matter what. This completely contradicts what Mercerism is based on and is our first thought provoking scene that maybe Mercerism is a fake. Overall, Mercerism plays an important role in the novel as it demonstrates the effect of religion on characters and the difference in life with or without it.