Evolution Of Sexuality, Gender And Feminism In Cyber Culture

1697 words - 7 pages

Evolution of Sexuality, Gender and Feminism in Cyber Culture

Within the ever-evolving cyber world, in which many people find themselves living, there are traditional aspects of a previous culture which are re-emerging with technological advances. There are changing expectations of almost all themes and ideas in life, including gender and sexuality that are emerging with different notions and concepts which accompany them. In Neuromancer, by William Gibson, gender and sexuality of cyber culture are themes which are redefined and addressed throughout the novel. Through these new definitions of sex and gender, which are modified by technological advances, feminism, sexuality and the ...view middle of the document...

Physical touching and intercourse was the main focus and notion of sexuality in a traditional sense. However, with the evolving world and changing times where the internet is dominant in society, sexuality adopts new concepts as well. On Wikipedia, cybersex is discussed extensively and the elements are described. For cybersex and love on the internet, there is no physical connection. The connection is made over a computer and it is not direct or physical. Partners work over programs and either type or speak their sexual fantasies and encounters. The better the visualization that the partner paints, the better the interaction is (Cybersex).
Rivieria enacts a similar idea when he is on the stage through holograms. Although Molly is physically in the room, she is not physically touching him. He is vividly painting an image, which exists in his mind and is displaying it to his audience. His depiction of Molly which appears slowly as he simulates touching her body and her body parts appear, is shown to the audience. On the internet in cybersex, this idea is similar to using a webcam, which allows the individuals to see each other on a live feed. This strong connection which Gibson creates in Neuromancer is a link to the cyber culture and technology which is taking over many aspects of our lives, including sexuality.
Secondly, gender in Neuromancer is a very common theme which is evident in many scenes and situations. The different characters have very individual and defined gender concepts, which are addressed throughout the story line. Molly’s gender is discussed throughout the novel and in the development of her character. Molly is a body guard, she is masculine in her physique, she is strong and muscular, but retains her sexy, feminine image, which draws Case and Riviera to her. She has razors that come out from her finger tips, reflective mirrors that seal off her eyes and can give her read outs on different information. Molly reveals that she acquired the money for her modifications through prostitution, which shows her use of sexiness and femininity. In “Digital Rage” by Claudia Springer, Molly is a strong example of the muscular and sexy woman who is technologically modified and holds a strong character role in the cyberpunk genre. But if these characters, which grace the pages of cyberpunk, have their own ideas of gender and what it means to be masculine and feminine, which they have acquired through technological downloads and microsofts, what information are they given? Who decides which information is passed and how does this alter gender roles and notions? (Springer)
This idea combines with feminism and the previously established masculine-feminine binary of a traditional culture. Cyber feminism is the evolution of earlier feminism, but it seems to have many grounded roots and foundation which emerges from this earlier form of feminism. In her essay, “On the Matrix: Cyberfeminist Simulations,” Sadie Plant describes cyber feminism...

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