Class Notes for 3/5/2015

Started off with a free writing about five different covers of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep.

Examined different versions of the novel’s covers:

Our current novel impressions:

  • Hunter – hunted with the infrared background on the sheep
  • Slavery
  • Reptilian  – perhaps chameleon to reference how androids blend in with the human populations

Bulgarian cover (?) (the one with the female humanoid android and the male human)

  • Surreal impression of Rachel and Deckard. Carnal relationship between Rachel and Deckard.
  • Desolate background
  • Electronic sheep (ersatz sheep) representation of man and machine.
  • Background ships could represent cops coming to stop the Carnal act
  • Does it actually matter if there are
  • Blanket represents a skin?
  • Blanket represents a division between android and human

German cover (?) (the one with the moon and the spaceship crashing on it)

  • Branding the book according to conventional stereotypes of science fiction
  • Might symbolize the androids escaping from mars
  • Used to highlight or obscure different themes of the book

Next we did group work, involving six questions about the film Bladerunner:

  1. Consider the differences between the novel and the film
  2. Consider the scene in J.F. Sebastian’s apartment, where the replicants encounter other automatons.
  3. Consider the scene in which Roy encounters his various creators.
  4. What’s up with the “unicorn” dream & origami figure at the end of it?
  5. Consider the theme of “eyes” in the movie.
  6. Consider the theme of memories in the movie.

We listed things absent in the movie that were originally in the novel*:

  • Mercerism
  • Iran
  • Empathy Box
  • Sheep
  • Isiodore
  • Post-Apocalyptic Fallout
  • Buster Friendly
  • The city is way more populated than in the book
  • No plot twists from the novel is present in film
    • No fake police department
  • No kipple

Things added to the film that was not present in the novel*:

  • Gaff – guy with the cane
  • Deckard’s lack of emotion
  • J.F. Sebastian
  • multi national metropolis
  • Film takes place in LA instead of San Francisco
  • Way too populated in the film
  • Sentimental love affair between Rachel and Deckard
  • Photographs as a physical representation of memories
  • Deckard’s Unicorn Dream

Drew attention to the concept of unnatural reproduction – presented by the android’s fixation on mother and father figures.

  • Leon and his ‘mother’ – Leon’s line just before he shoots Dave Holden
  • Roy and his ‘father’ – When Roy meets Tyrell
  • Rachel and her ‘mother’ – when she shows Deckard a picture of what she thinks is her mother

Took note of the scene when Priss first enters J.R. Sebastian’s apartment.

  • J.R. makes his own friends in the form of smaller automatons

Took note of the scene when Roy first sees Priss in J.R. Sebastian’s apartment.

  • J.R. Sebastian works for Tyrell as a genetic scientist
  • J.R. makes toys, to keep himself company
  • J.R. has a disease that accelerates his age
  • Strange how an automatons(androids) are playing with toys(automations)
  • Priss can be considered as a reference to a cyborg (part organic and part machine), and also a reference to blurring the lines between what is and is not ‘human’.

We discussed the idea of “what exactly is a cyborg?”

Question of the “other”. What does it mean to consider something as “other” than us?

Reliance on the Voight Kampff test or the image enhancements machine Deckard uses to detect Zora. Its interesting how humans need technology to detect technology. Many of the characters such as Tyrell and Chu have a deteriorated eyesight but are considered high in intelligence.

Discussed the importance of the scene where Priss is discovered by Deckard.

  • It is important in that it instills a form of fear in the viewer that Priss cannot be detected among the automations. If not instilling the fear, at least recognizing it.

*take note of minute 43 in the film about prosthesis*


Words to take note of:

  • Cyborg – half organic half machine entity
  • Posthumanism – after or beyond humanism
  • Hybrid – entity with mixed traits or elements
  • Religious 
  • Eyes
  • Prosthesis – artificial body part, used in the case of extreme injury of the original body part
  • Detective
  • Film Noir – films that encompass a genre of crime film or fiction characterized by cynicism, fatalism, and moral ambiguity (Wiki)
  • Cyberpunk – a genre of science fiction set in a lawless subculture of an oppressive society dominated by computer technology. (Wiki)
  • Chiaroscuro – art term to mean a use of strong contrast between light and dark. (Wiki)

Relating MoMa’s Visit to Science Fiction text:

Words that come to mind when thinking about the exhibit:

  • Infrastructure
  • Social responsibility
  • Clean energy
  • Poverty
  • Affordable housing
  • Recycling
  • Innovation
  • Mega Cities (population is at least 8 million people)
  • Tactical Urbanism
    • planning for urban environments
  • Uneven growth 
    • Wide wealth gap
  • Development
  • Survival
  • Economy
  • Social responsibility

The ‘solutions’ presented in the exhibit do not exist in the realm of reality. They are a culmination of architectural and scientific expert’s work on ideal solutions to present and future problems.

When we think of Ideals we can think of it in terms of what is vs. what ought to be. Science Fiction can be used to hypothesize possible scenarios that we can use to examine our world today.


Homework reminder:

“there will come soft Rain” (3 texts) – found in the schedule

SF Short intro (intro + chp 3) – 3rd book that you were supposed to have bought

Response post to class discussion MoMa + Metrololis

3 thoughts on “Class Notes for 3/5/2015

  1. Dude, this is so detailed haha. Which is of course a great thing. Good job man, especially how you mentioned the words that come to mind which I thought was pretty cool how you included that.

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