Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Neuromancer (3rd post)

Because of all the reasons I outlined in my previous Neuromancer posts, I want to add that I'm aware of Kevin Concannon's attempt to juxtapose Gibson's fractal/aural world with Gloria AnzaldĂșa's borderland location. I think Concannon does so out of a distinct world view (or perhaps even, hope) that casts cultural studies, which was predominant in 1998, as a trend that would soon pass. I think this article represents one of the earliest attempts to coopt cultural studies into digital studies because through his summary of Borderlands / La Frontera: The New Mestiza (among my personal favorite tomes), Concannon demonstrates a cursory understanding of AnzaldĂșa. And in so doing, he shows that he has not immersed himself in the epistemology of women of color as a more general category. He wants to over-particularize the idea of hybridity and cast it against future oriented thinking. I think Concannon wishes to reassert hegemony by dismissing real life borderlands for a mutually agreed upon aural space.

Thankfully, Donna Haraway comes along with "A Manifesto for Cyborgs" and shows she knows how to play with the boys, thus theoretically outshining Concannon, though still ideologically in his shadow. Mixed metaphors, not withstanding, Haraway is so successful in her linking of cyberspace to "woman of color" epistemology. And in her mapping of a diaspora (digital, perhaps?) she brings cultural studies and digital culture together.

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