Four Kinds of Cyborg

George P. Landow, Professor of English and Art History, Brown University

In "Cyborgology: Constructing the Knowledge of Cybernetic Organisms" -- the introduction to their Cyborg Handbook -- Chris Hables Gray, Steven Mentor, and Jennifer Figueroa-Sarriera describe four classes of cyborg:

Cyborg technologies can be restorative, in that they restore lost functions and replace lost organs and limbs; they can be normalizlng, in that thev restore some creature to indistinguishable normality; they can be ambiguously reconfiguring, creating posthuman creatures equal to but different from humans, like what one is now when interacting with other creatures in cyberspace or, in the future, the type of modifications proto-humans will undergo to live in space or under the sea having given up the comforts of terrestrial existence; and they can be enhancing, the aim of most military and industrial research, and what those with cyborg envy or even cyborgphilia fantasize. The latter category seeks to construct everything from factories controlled by a handful of "worker-pilots" and infantrymen in mind-controlled exoskeletons to the dream many computer scientists have-downloading their consciousness into immortal computers. [3]

Cyberspace Main Screen Cyborg

Last modified 14 April 2005