Re-assembling the cyborg: an exploration of the analytical and emancipatory potentials of cyborg diseases

Hadi Mehrpouya, Afshin Mehrpouya

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Our existence is increasingly entangled with modern technology. As technologies evolve, our human-technology cyborgs are stuck in a cycle of reterritorialization and coding. The ailments of the technology and those of the human were our concern however; we ignored the diseases of cyborgs as a fluid ontology. In this paper, we aim to develop a pathological analysis of cyborgs. We conceptualise the diseases of cyborg as lines of flights that create windows of opportunity for de-stratifying and reterritorializing cyborg configurations. To do this, we use the case of “Maladox”, a speculative design work by one of the authors, investigating our entanglements with modern technology through a conceptual development of cyborg diseases. First, we discuss the role that the idea of sickness played in framing of human-technology interactions. Our focus is on how technology codifies our bodies (Svenaeus, 2013) and our ideas of self. We then extend Haravay’s notion of cyborgs and reflect on its ailments from a Deleuzian perspective. We apply the notion of body-without organs to analyse “Maladox” and further develop the notion of cyborg diseases. Finally, we expand on the critical/emancipatory potential of cyborg diseases as short-lived moments when a new cyborg ethics and reconfigurations can come about.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 13 Nov 2020
EventIndeterminate Futures / The Future of Indeterminacy - Univeristy of Dundee, Dundee, United Kingdom
Duration: 13 Nov 202015 Nov 2020


ConferenceIndeterminate Futures / The Future of Indeterminacy
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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