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Mercerism - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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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?.

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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?

  • gives the characters hope after the war
  • to show how much people care (element of empathy), reveals qualities in their personalities
  • to show the effect that is has on character’s behaviour, feelings and actions

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.


Al Jarry

An alcoholic filmmaker from Hollywood who created…

Wilber Mercer

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…


Buster Friendly

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)

Buster Friendly


Isidore- chicken head

  • Strong follower of Mercerism.
  • Treats all people equal because of this.
  • Fusion makes him feel as if he is not alone

Rick Deckard~ special, bounty hunter

  • Not very involved in Mercerism, which allows him to do his job.
  • However, the more he kills, the more he feels linked to Mercerism.
  • Almost believes he is Mercer nearing the end of the novel.

Roy Baty~ android

  • Very dismissive of Mercerism.
  • Is very un-empathic because of this.

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.