Wednesday, November 15

A scholarly discussion on Ghost in the Shell anime

Dead Inside: Reviving the Cyborg Soul in Masamune Shirow’s Ghost in the Shell

Joseph Babcock
Introduction: Cyborg Life in the Land of the Dead

Japan, 2029: neurons and silicon have been technologically integrated, and the human body is a playground for cybernetic modification. Covert agents, equipped with government-owned cyborg bodies, are immersed in multi-level international conspiracy. Many of these individuals retain only their brain stem, or a few neurons, as a mark of their humanity. Besides these trace tissues, only their “ghosts”, their transplanted human minds, distinguish them from intelligent robots. This is the world of Masamune Shirow’s Ghost in the Shell: the divide between humanity and its machines has seldom seemed so uncertain.

Shirow’s manga presents a dystopic world, a darker form of the future described by Donna Haraway in her Cyborg Manifesto. Where Haraway sees the possibility for gender and cultural boundaries to be dissolved by cybernetics, Shirow focuses on the dehumanizing aspects of cyborg technology. Similar to the pessimistic vision contemplated by media scholar Steven Shaviro in his book Connected, Shirow foresees the human body being “taken over”2 by cybernetics. In this postmodern future, the line between man and machine has become vague. However, the two are not entirely integrated, and this incomplete synthesis creates an identity crisis for Shirow’s protagonist, Section 9 agent “Major” Motoko Kusanagi. Locked within an artificial body, Kusanagi questions her humanity, feeling alienated from her physical shell. By merging with the artificial intelligence known as the Puppet Master, she achieves total unification with the machine, becoming a “true” cyborg.

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I will comment on this one later. Still digesting what the article trying to say.

yes I am cheap. I like to reuse pictures. hahahahahaha!

Haruhi Suzumiya 2nd Season......

"Haruhi season two was originally planned for the year after next year, but the schedule was sped up and now it looks like it's confirmed for next year Fall. By the way, it looks like a Zero no Tsukaima season two is also in works for a next year Fall start as well.

PS. I'm surprised at the huge response towards the Haruhi second season rumor, even though I didn't even talk about it all that much. By the way, the source is a wire from the same person who provided me with the announcement of the new Eva movie earlier."

Direct translation from Moonphase.

A cause for rejoice? Maybe. Why I do not jump immediately? Because despite all the materials available from the novels, I don't think it will do well 2nd round since the quirky charms generated by 1st series will excite me as much anymore. You can say the magic might fizzle out and it will be amusing series but not "oh wow" type. I was worried that the 2nd series will be well made strange comedy but will be overhyped to death by legions of fans around the world.

However being pessimist I was, I was hoping for the best. It remains to be seen if Kyoto Animation can keep up their good work. I have to watch new Kanon but from I heard, it is pretty good buzz so far.

More here