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14 | 2018
Posthumains en séries

Serial Posthumans
Edited by Hélène Machinal and Monica Michlin

This issue gathers critical analyses of narratives and representations of the posthuman (in the restrictive sense of AI that can pass the Turing test, humanoid robots that have achieved consciousness and sentience, cyborgs and other human-machine hybrids) in a number of contemporary TV series, including Westworld, Black Mirror and Dollhouse. The articles in this collection deal with issues of production (adaptation and re-adaptation, serial remakes, the Hollywood “machine” and the serial production of posthuman-themed serials) as well as with issues of reception (the literary, filmic, artistic, and televisual intertexts explicitly referenced by the series themselves or mere allusions to be “decoded” by the viewers, making them active interpreters of the aesthetic, political and cultural meaning of these multilayered as well as multi-episode narratives). Also under discussion in these contributions is how posthuman identities are performed at the intradiegetic level (the posthuman identity as simulacrum, simulation, or as the performative construction of an identity “played” over and over again in what often appears as the mise en abyme of the actor’s or actress’s performance). Finally, many of the articles explore the interface allowing viewer reception of these series – the screens and streaming of digital data, which are diegetically at the heart of these fictions and of our extradiegetic hyper-connected lives alike, prompting the question whether we are not already at least somewhat posthuman.

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