Category Archives: cyborgs/posthumans

“After a Judgment Day,” Edmond Hamilton, 1963

“After a Judgment Day,” Edmond Hamilton, 1963 — Fallout has mutated harmless bacteria into the A-Plague, which wipes out humanity.  Five men on a lunar outpost have been engaged in sending out “cyborgs” to explore various planets.  Three return home … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, astronauts, catastrophe, cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality, disease/plague, museums/artifacts, suicide | Leave a comment

“The Ship Who Sang,” Anne McCaffrey, 1961

“The Ship Who Sang,” Anne McCaffrey, 1961 – A woman with severe disabilities is offered the chance to become a “shell person”—a human brain encased in a machine–after which she will work off her debt as a ship with a … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, class/labor/"work", cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality, disability, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, freaks/misfits, function/utility/skeumorphs, gender, identity/authenticity, love/family/children, senses/space, the body | 1 Comment

“Alpha Ralpha Boulevard,” Cordwainer Smith, 1961

“Alpha Ralpha Boulevard,” Cordwainer Smith, 1961 — In the “first years of the Rediscovery of Man, when the Instrumentality dug deep in the treasury, reconstructing the old cultures, the old languages, and even the old troubles,” Paul and Virginia tour … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, agency/will/freedom, animals/insects, cities/architecture/habitats, class/labor/"work", cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality, difference/tolerance, disease/plague, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, hubris/pride, identity/authenticity, love/family/children, museums/artifacts, myth, natural/artificial, primitive/civilized, spectatorship/voyeurism, the Other, time/history/causality, tourists | Leave a comment

“Old Hundreth,” Brian Aldiss, 1960

“Old Hundreth,” Brian Aldiss, 1960 – A story of far earth and the human calvacade that marched through time to reach it, now transcended (uploaded) to a static plane of mingled personality.  This long-forgotten human civilization has left behind its … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, animals/insects, cyborgs/posthumans, evolution, favorites, museums/artifacts, music, religion/soul/spirituality, speed/slowness, the body, violence, war/soldiers | 1 Comment

“The Lady Who Sailed the Soul,” Cordwainer Smith, 1960

“The Lady Who Sailed the Soul,” Cordwainer Smith, 1960 – A young girl of the future asks her mother if there were ever any “girl sailors” (in space) and is told the story of Helen America.  The daughter of a … Continue reading

Posted in 1960-1969, astronauts, class/labor/"work", cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, freaks/misfits, gender, genrecraft, identity/authenticity, love/family/children, media/advertising, myth, religion/soul/spirituality, the body, time/history/causality | Leave a comment

“Dio,” Damon Knight, 1957

“Dio,” Damon Knight, 1957 — (Alternate title: “The Dying Man”)  The world is composed of two immortal classes–the pampered Players and the responsible Planners and their students.  Their lives of hedonism and leisurely scholarship, respectively, are progressing as planned until … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, aesthetics/beauty, american culture, artists/creativity, cities/architecture/habitats, class/labor/"work", consumerism, cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality, difference/tolerance, disease/plague, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, freaks/misfits, love/family/children, masculinity, mourning/grief, museums/artifacts, sex/reproduction/sterility, spectatorship/voyeurism, speed/slowness, suicide, superhumans, the body, the Other, time/history/causality | Leave a comment

“The Die-Hard,” Alfred Bester, 1958

“The Die-Hard,” Alfred Bester, 1958 – (short short) The last “man” on earth is visited in his rest home by the new, “adjusted” cybernetic human male.  Most of the standardized males are named Tom, although they employ subtle distinctions in … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, culture clash, cyborgs/posthumans, difference/tolerance, favorites, freaks/misfits, gender, generational conflict, identity/authenticity, invasion, masculinity, mechanization, memory, museums/artifacts, natural/artificial, physicians/medicine, progress/obsolescence, the body, the Other, time/history/causality, violence | Leave a comment

“Watershed,” James Blish, 1955

“Watershed,” James Blish, 1955 — In a future in which the basic human type can no longer inhabit Earth, an Adapted Man and the seal-man Hoqqueah argue over the idea of a “primary type” for human kind. Wikipedia summary: “[‘Watershed’] … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, cyborgs/posthumans, difference/tolerance, evolution, exiles/"home"/displacement, function/utility/skeumorphs, memory, race/civil rights, the body | Leave a comment

“Crucifixus Etiam,” Walter M. Miller, Jr., 1953

“Crucifixus Etiam,” Walter M. Miller, Jr., 1953– (Alternate title: “The Sower Does Not Reap”)  A Peruvian named Manue (Emmanuel?) Nanti decides to work on Mars for an extended period of time in order to secure his future on Earth.  In … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, class/labor/"work", cyborgs/posthumans, post/colonialism, religion/soul/spirituality, the body | Leave a comment

“Down Among the Dead Men,” William Tenn, 1954

“Down Among the Dead Men,” William Tenn, 1954 – Soldiers are grown or fitted together from human parts to feed the war machine of a desperate, reproduction-obsessed society.  A military commander must lead a troupe of new recruits, all replicated … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality, difference/tolerance, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, interior/exterior, masculinity, psych/mind/madness, sex/reproduction/sterility, the body, war/soldiers | Leave a comment

“Short in the Chest,” Idris Seabright (Margaret St. Clair), 1954

“Short in the Chest,” Idris Seabright (Margaret St. Clair), 1954 – A tough, young female Marine consults a huxley (robot psychologist) as to the nature of her “dighting” problem.  She finds herself unable to perform mandatory sexual relations with her … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, automata/robots, cyborgs/posthumans, favorites, gender, psych/mind/madness, sex/reproduction/sterility, war/soldiers | Leave a comment

“Imposter,” Philip K. Dick, 1953

“Imposter,” Philip K. Dick, 1953 – Spence Olham is informed that he’s been killed and replaced by an android as part of a plot by the Outspacers to detonate a U-bomb inside enemy lines.  He flees and leads his pursuers … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, automata/robots, cyborgs/posthumans, identity/authenticity, interior/exterior, memory, natural/artificial, paranoia/schitzophrenia, psych/mind/madness, war/soldiers | Leave a comment

“Second Variety,” Philip K. Dick, 1953

“Second Variety,” Philip K. Dick, 1953 – A soldier discovers that his self-replicating, mechanical enemies have discovered a new, thoroughly disorienting form of camouflage—the imitation of human beings. Comments:  Online text at Project Gutenberg; Librivox recording also available. Themes include … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, cyborgs/posthumans, emotions/intimacy/empathy, favorites, identity/authenticity, interior/exterior, natural/artificial, paranoia/schitzophrenia, religion/soul/spirituality, simulacra, the body, the uncanny, theatre/performance, war/soldiers | Leave a comment

“The Chapter Ends,” Poul Anderson, 1953

“The Chapter Ends,” Poul Anderson, 1953 — A posthuman captain tries to convince a traditionalist to leave earth. Aliens have made a compact with the now mani-formed “humans” to vacate Earth and reside elsewhere.  A stubborn man is willing to … Continue reading

Posted in 1946-1959, cyborgs/posthumans, difference/tolerance, exiles/"home"/displacement | Leave a comment

“No Woman Born,” C. L. Moore, 1944

“No Woman Born,” C. L. Moore, 1944 – The famous dancer Deirdre is horribly burned in a theater fire and her mind is transplanted into a golden, robotic body.  After much time spent recovering under the care of the physician … Continue reading

Posted in 1940-1945, aesthetics/beauty, american culture, artists/creativity, cyborgs/posthumans, difference/tolerance, favorites, freaks/misfits, gender, male anxiety, masculinity, media/advertising, music, natural/artificial, photo/film/image, psych/mind/madness, senses/space, sex/reproduction/sterility, spectatorship/voyeurism, television, the body, the gaze, the Other, theatre/performance | 1 Comment

“The Storm,” A. E. van Vogt, 1943

“The Storm,” A. E. van Vogt, 1943 – “Mixed Men” descended from robots are of “two minds.”  They must defend their culture, and that of yet another type of cybernetic mixing, from the imperialist humans, ancient enemies who are rapidly … Continue reading

Posted in 1940-1945, cyborgs/posthumans, dreams/hypnosis, favorites, masculinity, post/colonialism, race/civil rights, reality/VR/surreal, the body, the Other | Leave a comment

“The City of Cosmic Rays,” Nat Schachner, 1939

“The City of Cosmic Rays,” Nat Schachner, 1939 – The continuing adventures of Kleon, Sam, and Beltan (see “Past, Present, and Future“).  Pursued by their enemies, they now find themselves in a city that celebrates individualism and difference.  No two … Continue reading

Posted in 1926-1939, cyborgs/posthumans, difference/tolerance | Leave a comment

“The Jameson Satellite,” Neil R. Jones, 1931

“The Jameson Satellite,” Neil R Jones, 1931 – A man preserves his life by launching himself into space and orbiting the earth as a satellite.  Millennia pass and he is discovered by alien cyborgs (the Zoromes).  The aliens possess metal … Continue reading

Posted in 1926-1939, astronauts, cyborgs/posthumans, death/immortality | Leave a comment

“The Revolt of the Pedestrians,” David H. Keller, MD, 1928

“The Revolt of the Pedestrians,” David H. Keller, MD, 1928 – Society has divided itself into in the atrophied, vaguely cybernetic “drivers” and tribes of death-defying “pedestrians.” Comments: Note: Keller is identified by Michael R. Page in The Man With … Continue reading

Posted in 1926-1939, cars/pedestrians, cyborgs/posthumans, evolution, progress/obsolescence, speed/slowness, violence | Leave a comment

“The Man with the Strange Head,” Miles J. Breuer, 1927

“The Man with the Strange Head,” Miles J. Breuer, 1927 – A doctor spies on a potential patient, who has been reported by his neighbors as pacing in his apartment and making strange noises.  He tries to determine the man’s … Continue reading

Posted in 1926-1939, automata/robots, cyborgs/posthumans, favorites, freaks/misfits, gender, horror, interior/exterior, male anxiety, masculinity, mechanization, natural/artificial, psych/mind/madness, the body | Leave a comment