THE ARTIFICIAL MAN: A SEMI-SCIENTIFIC STORY (1884) – Written by an unknown figure under the pseudonym Don Quichotte.
This short story from the August 16th issue of The Argonaut is an early example of trans-humanism. The title figure, bearing a malformed head and short limbs, encounters the tale’s narrator. At first the artificial man seems to be very old but suprisingly, he claims to be just 18 years of age.
The artificial human says his scientist creator “grew” him in a bell jar and that he does not eat like normal people do. Instead, he was given a synthetic stomach into which nutrients are injected and his stomach contains gastric juices from a calf which enable him to digest the nutrients. Continue reading
Director Shinya Tsukamoto hails from Japan and is noted for his surreal, nightmarish excursions into the darker side of transformative industrial technology … especially any technology that impacts the human anatomy.
Tsukamoto’s noteworthy films include:
Tetsuo: The Iron Man (1989) – From the early shots of a man removing one of his own bones and replacing it with a piece of metal viewers knew this was a work of true genius. Tetsuo becomes more and more relevant by the year, especially with the advent of nanotechnology and its potentially invasive effect on the human mind and body.
The anatomies of the film’s characters become distorted and mutate into metal figures that challenge preconceived notions of beauty, ugliness, gender and even what constitutes life. Continue reading