文學組教學工作坊

日期:107年4月18日

時間:13:30-15:00

地點:英文系文化教室R0905

主講人:蘇秋華老師

講題:Automata and Human Physiology: A Posthuman Perspective

摘要:

Automata always fascinate human beings, despite the fact that the implications of the word have been changing along the history.  This enchantment may result from our view of automata as our “doubles.”  The machines which simulate human appearance, act humanlike, or perform even better than us inevitably evoke the feeling of uncanniness.  They force us to think who we are and unsettle our concept of human beings.

I will trace the manufacture of automata back to the eighteenth century, when the Enlightenment was in full bloom. Stemming from the exquisite craftsmanship of watchmaking, automata-building bespeaks the origin of New Science which emphasizes mathematics, geometry, abstraction, and measurement. If we regard new science as the “childhood” of modern science, we can say that the “boy” has automata as his beloved toys.  

Following this line of thought, I will go further to investigate how the toy, also a double, shapes the full grown man as he is. To be more specific, how the boy learns about and grows into himself by playing with his automata.  The focus will be put on the similarity between the construction of water-or-steam driven machines and the understanding of human body. I will discuss how the observations of automata have contributed to the development of modern physiology.

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Last Updated On: August 10, 2015

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