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Title: Posthuman noir : creating positive posthumans
Author: Gee, Maxine F.
ISNI:       0000 0004 7225 9118
Awarding Body: University of York
Current Institution: University of York
Date of Award: 2017
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Posthuman noir is a new subgenre I have identified at the intersection of posthuman science fiction and traditional film noir. In this thesis, I establish the defining features of this new subgenre; explore its antecedents in the body of films labelled as film noir and in the philosophical concepts of transhumanism and posthumanism; and examine the way the subgenre privileges two human traits — emotional awakening and storytelling ability — arguing that these intangible traits act as essential definers of what it is to be human in the posthuman future. In this thesis, I argue that this subgenre explores what it is to be human through adapting or subverting the tropes found in traditional film noir. My creative practice methodology seeks to explore a non-hierarchical approach to knowledge production, through chapters which interlink academic scholarship with my creative practice of screenwriting. Through figuring the screenplay as a posthuman text evolving towards becoming-film, and through channelling myself as a cyborg-screenwriter, my creative practice — an expression of the human storytelling ability which aims to generate an emotional awakening in the reader — aims to mirror the themes around these essential human traits within the subgenre. Therefore, the reader is encouraged to engage both their emotional and rational thinking processes when reading the thesis; it is this balanced combination, which reflects human thought processes, that is validated within the subgenre. It is particularly pertinent to discuss this subgenre at this present moment as human beings are on a rapid path to becoming posthuman, if we aren’t already there, as critics like N. Katherine Hayles argue. However, I posit that this subgenre has a conservative impulse which seeks to maintain an anthropocentric view of the future and validates humanistic notions of the human rather than pushing a posthumanist vision.
Supervisor: van der Borgh, Simon ; Ng, Jenna Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available