Macquarie University
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The hum of its parts: locating posthuman subjectivity, identity and agency through power and technology

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posted on 2022-03-28, 16:00 authored by Matthew Yap
This thesis seeks to investigate two issues regarding posthumanism. Firstly, it examines how the posthuman subject's identity development is influenced by social forces, primarily Ideological State Apparatuses (ISAs).Posthuman technology offers numerous avenues for ISAs to insert and encode their ideologies into the posthuman subject, shaping the range and freedom of identities that posthumans can enjoy. Often, these subject positions are narrow and disempowered, driving posthumans to search for methods to disrupt the ISAs' power and ideologies over their identities. Therefore, the second aim of this thesis is to discuss the capacity for posthumans to redefine and reclaim their identities as their own through strategic acts of resignification which resist the limited subject positions the ISAs expect them to occupy. The two primary texts analyzed in this thesis are M.T. Anderson’s Feed and Debra Driza’s Mila 2.0. In both texts, posthuman technology is seemingly presented as having the capacity to enhance and elevate the posthuman experience. However, the ISAs that dominate technology actually use it to interpellate and control their posthuman subjects. Nevertheless, by resignifying their performances and their use of their technological abilities, the posthumans in both texts empower and liberate their identities by defying the ISAs’ power.


Table of Contents

Introduction. The nuts and volts : identifying the systems of posthuman identity formation -- Chapter One. Sparks and disconnection : technology's effacing effect on posthuman identity in Feed -- Chapter Two. The circuitry inside me : high-tech identity fragmentation and confusion in Mila 2.0 -- Chapter Three. Challenging the motherboard : resignification as resistance for posthuman identity liberation -- Conclusion. Unplugged : free to be a technological you and me?


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 61-64

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of English

Department, Centre or School

Department of English

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Ryan Twomey


Copyright Matthew Yap 2014. Copyright disclaimer:




1 online resource (64 pages)

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