[ISEA2011] Paper: Özgür Caliskan – Techno-human: New form of hybrid human; from science-fiction cinema to the post-modern society


Science-fiction cinema has always significant role as an art form to define and discuss the future of interaction between human and technology; telling the stories of altered identities and expanded bodies for instance; Videodrome (1983), the Terminator (1984), Crash (1996), the Matrix (1999), Johnny Mnemonic (1995) and so on.  As science-fiction cinema promises, today, in the non-fictional world, human being is exposed by machines; cars, computers, mobile phones, networks, prosthesis and others. Therefore, body and identity of human is changed by technology, especially by digital devices and it is necessity to find a new explanation for this new form of human in the renewed post-modern society. When Scott Bukatman (1993) explains this reformed human figure in SF cinema with the notion of “terminal” body and identity, after 10 years, Giuseppe O. Longo (2003) use the term “homo-technologicus” for man-kind of the 21st Century. Referencing these two approaches; this paper discusses the process of how human body and identity is affected by machines and how this alteration materialized from science-fiction cinema to the real life. In addition, this paper explains and uses a new term “techno-human” to define the new hybrid version of the human that lives in between non-fictional world of social networks, television, the Internet, mobile phones and fictional world of science-fiction cinema. Definition of hybrid “techno-human” includes implanted and virtual bodies, relocation of human limbs, devices as extension of bodies, digitized memories, technophilia and televisionized identities.

  • Özgür Caliskan was born in 1986, Istanbul, Turkey. He has done BA in Film & TV studies. During his BA, practically, he made several videos for school and individual projects, also he wrote and directed three short movies which two of them were screened internationally. Theoretically, he studied auteur theory and also the representation of human in science-fiction cinema. In the University of Bahcesehir, he founded Modern Arts Club  that he directed and performed sevreal video / dance projects.  He has done his exchange studies in University of Ulster, UK, at the department of art and media studies including film psychoanalysis. In fall 2009, he started his MA in the International Digital Culture Programme in the University of Jyvaskyla, Finland. In his MA, he has concentrated on the similarirites of post-industrial society and science-fiction cinema in terms of the relationship between human and technology. Recently, he has just finished his MA and he is planning to study in the area of neurocinematics.

Full text (PDF) p.  322-327