User:MarinChristina/HUMN 4472 Journal

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August 16, 2019: Science Fiction

Science explores the enigma of our world through logic and reasoning. When science merges with imagination, creativity, and expressionism that embraces the reasoning of logic and reasoning, science fiction is born. Science fiction explores the what if of science. Science is all about experimentation, hypothesizing, and theorizing information. Fiction brings out the imagination of experimenting various scenarios that could be plausible like unidentified flying objects and aliens.

Unidentified Flying Objects, also known as UFOs, are an integral part of science fiction. UFOs are intellectual and advanced spacecraft that can travel light years in a matter of seconds throughout the universe. Science Fiction explores the what if of UFOs. Although UFOs are written in literature as entertainment, science fiction does explore the possibilities of human interaction with UFOs. Some interactions have actually occurred in real life and are imagined through the creative pen of an author. Skeptics about the existence of UFOs are aplenty yet there are historical references to UFO sightings in the United States.

Aliens are the heart of most science fiction literary works. Aliens can be human like or nonhuman, friend, or foe. In my opinion, I believe that aliens are real. Science fiction delves into the what if of aliens. How can the great pyramids and sphinxes in Egypt or the Colossus of Rhodes be built by mere mortals? Who were these "gods and goddesses" the ancient world all feverishly worshiped? The characteristics are too coincidental to not be aliens. I do not believe that humans in those eras, who had very low life expectancy and were physically inferior than humans of today, could be strong enough to create these wondrous works or be intelligent enough to think of intense story lines. Science fiction has yet to be proven as scientific fact, but the creativity and imagination of it is something to contemplate.

@MarinChristina: Science merging with imagination is an excellent way to describe science fiction in a minimum amount of words. While it is very true that UFOs are a go to when we imagine and visualize science fiction, I think the beauty of science fiction is that it is not strapped to just a few concepts or influenced even by just one or two things as the leader. Science fiction is innovative, hence why it has been able to predict things that scientist were not even aware of or working on until science fiction spawned the ideas. Again, it is true that aliens and UFOs play a huge role in science fiction, but I do not think it stays just there. Its about fantasy and science coming together to create a world that, although it may seem unreal to us, could very possibly be plausible because there is science to back it up. Tprouty93 (talk) 13:16, 5 September 2019 (EDT)

August 20, 2019: Journal 2

Science fiction has went through significant transitions through the 1960's, 1970's, and 1980's. In the 1960's science fiction is scary. The social climate and political changes causes a negative outlook against science fiction. The disruptive uneasiness of progressive changes in race, gender, and politics, along with the introduction of science fiction, has the male dominated society fearing their statuses as doomed. Science fiction in the 1960's is rife with hostility and agitated fears of outside domination. During the 1960's Communism, the Vietnam War, and the Cold War all negatively impact writers who translate the pessimism into their works.[1] Racial and gender revolutions became the domestic domination threatening the frigid patriarchal society. By the 1970's and the 1980's science fiction softens and is more creative thus embracing race, and gender relations. An interesting fact that I did not know about science fiction is the psychic predictions of H.G. Wells in his 1898 book War of the Worlds . In the War of the Worlds Wells predicts the air and tank warfare that predicts the coming of World War I and World War II.[2]

Interestingly, I believe that science fiction is all about aliens, monsters, space ships, and robots (artificial intelligence). In reality, those aspects have base in film and not actual scientific fictional works.[3] Science fiction true base is in science and technology. There is no definite concrete labeling to science fiction. Like science, there are methods and approaches to science fiction. [4] Science fiction's diversity brings an illustration of real-life unexplained events with scientific facts. There are topics that we do not know of their origins. The methods are in a hypotheses state until it is a theory.


@MarinChristina: could you clarify your last sentences on this post? Shicks95 (talk) 21:46, 8 September 2019 (EDT)

@Shicks95: When I wrote "the methods are in a hypotheses state until it is a theory" is that we can only speculate and think about something that is real like aliens, life on other planets, the existence of monsters, etc., by scrounging up evidence. Until we have enough concrete evidence and proof than we can accurately theorize that these things exist and are not unproven experiments.MarinChristina (talk) 23:04, 12 September 2019 (EDT)

September 01, 2019: Journal 3

John Cheever, the author of "The Swimmer", argues that reality and perception are interchangeable and are hard to separate facts from fiction because of the chronic alcoholism of the main character. The internal conflict by the main character Neddy Merrill is in a state of purgatory before his final decent into hell. In the beginning of the story, he is in an idealistic mind frame. He is living in an affluent neighborhood. He is married, a father of four daughters, rich, and has a lot of friends. Cheever writes, "his life was not confining and the delight he took in this observation could not be explained by its suggestion to escape". Neddy's personality suggests that he thinks highly of himself as "he had a vague and modest idea of himself as a legendary figure. [5]This part of the factual reality and perception is that he is from an affluent neighborhood, he is a married father of four daughters, and he is popular. This is Neddy's perception of heaven. All he needs is some alcohol to keep his energy going to make it through the day. He has an idea to travel eight miles from a neighbors home to his home by swimming through a series of pools in the neighborhood. Neddy sees himself as a pilgrim swimming along the Lucinda River which he names the river after his wife. As he swims through the pools he stops and makes conversations with neighbors. The first few neighbors entertain him by supplying him with alcohol. By the time he arrives to the Levys' he has drank four to five drinks before reaching eight miles and in a matter of a few hours.[6]

Neddy's realization that he is in purgatory happens when there is a change in atmosphere with the rainstorm. The midsummer becomes cooler. His neighbors the Lindleys' and the Welchers' homes are abandoned and for sale. This reality signifies that a significant amount of time has went by. Cheever gives us a look into the reality from the fictional perspective of an alcohol fueled Neddy as he stands on Route 424 in only his swim trunks barefoot in "the deposits of the highway-beer cans, rags, and blowout patches".[7] Reality pierces through him when he reaches the Hallorans who pity him about the loss of his children and his house. This is when he notices that his swim trunks are loose and the water is no longer inviting to swim in. He is like the water-cold and depressing. When he encounters the Hallorans daughter and her husband he learns that it has been three years since he lost his family and his home. Neddy descends into hell after being shunned at a party by the Biswangers, a wealthy couple who loaned him five thousand dollars which he did not pay back. He realizes he lost his social standing when the bartender snubs him. His mistress rebukes him and he finally realizes that his wealthy, popularity, and most importantly, his family has all been destroyed because of his alcoholism.

Author Stanley J. Kozikowski of "Damned in a Fair Lie: Cheever's "The Swimmer" supports the idea that Neddy is in a descent to hell. Kozikowski proposes the story reflects the pilgrimage to hell akin to the structure of Dante's Inferno. Neddy is trying to keep a hold of the earthly realm as he navigates through the different realms of realities that eventually leads him into hell. Drunkenness is the earthly sin that leads to his demise. Kozikowski argues that there are religious aspects in the story by using the church and river as his support. In the beginning of "The Swimmer" there is a mention of priests and parishioners secretly imbibing on alcohol, therefore "drinking too much" like Neddy and his friends. The river is an illusion masking Neddy's arrogance, pride, and envy. Kozikowski writes, "all souls in hell are oblivious to the present and that they can but barely make out things distant-that is from either the present or the future".[8]

I see "The Swimmer" as science fiction because of the warp in time and reality. Similar to The Twilight Zone, "The Swimmer" begins the story under one pretense and shifts into another therefore bringing us readers into the mind of the main character. Neddy is both the protagonist and the antagonist of the story. He puts himself in a positive light as a good person, but in reality he is not. He is an alcoholic, an adulterer, and a moocher.

@MarinChristina: I also believe that the swimmer would be considered a science fiction work because of how time and reality is used in it. Time and Space/Reality can be warped in to anything. It is evident with how Neddy goes from one reality to another and how things become more and more distorted and when he comes home he doesn't know who much time had past and now his home is destroyed and desolate.Tami Marie (talk) 9:53 6 September 2019

@MarinChristina: Well said. I also think Neddy tried to escape reality by living in his past. Yet, the further along he went on his journey, he realized that he could not do so.--Daisja30 (talk) 19:07, 8 September 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: I like your interpretation that Neddy's drinking alcohol was a cause of the surreal events of the story. When I read it, I was thinking they were a symptom of what he was going through instead. I read it that he was trying harder and harder to make sense of what was going on around him. Your post makes sense, though. Great point about the spiritual significance of water, too. -MorganAtMGA (talk) 21:08, 8 September 2019 (EDT)

September 04, 2019 Journal 4

Chris Marker's film "La Jetée" shares a common aspect with John Cheever's "The Swimmer" of obsession. The protagonist in "La Jetée" is like Neddy Merrill in "The Swimmer" because their lives focus on one object and everything else is just the extras that sit as the background. The protagonist's obsession is a woman who he sees in his dreams. Neddy's obsession is alcohol. Both characters are under the influence of a drug. In the film, the man is being supplied with intravenous drugs and Neddy's drug is the depressant, alcohol. In both situations they are in a dream like state or like a fantasy that they believe to be reality. Both of them revert to a childlike innocence when they are dealing with the past. Michael Croombs, author of "La jetée in Historical Time: Torture, Visuality, Displacement", writes La Jetée reverses "the discourse that relegated torture to a thing of the past; To watch La Jetée is to be reminded of the simple fact that torture is happening." [9].

In the case for both characters the torture is being awake in the mind but not being awake outside of the mind. They both see what they want to see instead of actually seeing the truth. There are signs throughout the film and the short story. However, their individual obsessions limits their realities which in turn is their torturous demises. The protagonist realizes the woman he is obsessing over is a distraction. He sees himself through the eyes of his childhood and later realizes too late that he could have prevented his death. His mistakes is focusing too much on the woman instead of his surroundings. Neddy Merrill's obsession with alcohol is his living torture. He cannot function without a drink and if he had been sober he would have came to realize that alcohol is the cause of his demise. Marker's "La Jetée" message to viewers is that "you cannot refuse the past and you cannot escape time"[10].

@MarinChristina: Hello! It certainly seems as though Neddy is struggling with an alcohol addiction. The story really makes it seem like society in general struggles with alcohol use just by the first line of the story in which everyone is complaining about having drank too much. I also see Neddy as being obsessed with the past just like the protagonist in La Jatée. Both men have something they wish to get back to that no longer exists in the present. Christina.moore2 (talk) 17:20, 6 September 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: Some excellent observations and support. 👍 Please use paragraphs in your writing to make your work more accessible. Thanks. —Grlucas (talk) 16:12, 9 September 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: I really enjoyed your post and the points you made. Though I recognized the drinking that Neddy indulged a little heavily in while digesting the story, I did not mentally address it as nor see that it could be an addiction he had. I simple wrote everything off to immaturity for both Neddy and the protagonist of La Jatée. Tprouty93 (talk) 23:20, 28 September 2019 (EDT)

September 12, 2019 Journal 5

"The Gernsback Continuum" is a short story about a photographer who works does freelance photography. He has a job to photograph architectural buildings for a Borris-Watford employee named Cohen. The company specializes in paperbacks that feature odd facts and quirky information about the "illustrated histories of the neon sign, the pinball machine, and windup toys of Occupied Japan. Similarly, these paperbacks are comparable to Uncle John's Bathroom Reader[11] The narrator meets up with prime mover behind "America Streamlined Moderne", Dialta Downes, a woman who enamors over the "baroque elements of American pop culture" is set to create a futuristic American reality with her through the narrator's photography of architecture. Her passion is American architecture and technology with a concentration in a futuristic 1930's America.

Conflicting Views

The narrator is a grounded and unimaginable person in comparison with Dialta Downes. Her name is a play on her personality. She is exuberant and full of ideas that is aggravating to the narrator. Hence her name is a play on "dial down" he wants her to take her energy down a bit. Dialta is an optimist and imagines a world where the possibilities are endless and fantastic. She is a dreamer. On the other hand, the narrator is a realist. Dialta thinks of the 1930s as an inspiration for a nirvana like utopia where the buildings are spectacular, the people are happy, and the technology is genius. Dialta imagines a world where the past needs a revision. Dialta aims for an America that wasn't theme.

The narrator thinks of the 1930s for inspiration as a terrible idea. Historically, the 1930s is one of the most tumultuous decades in United States history. Adolf Hitler and the Great Depression plagues the 1930s. Lacking enthusiasm of the past, the narrator focuses on the architectural buildings he photographs akin to the buildings of "sinister totalitarian dignity, like stadiums Albert Speer built for Hitler".[12]

Disillusion or Reality?

All around the areas the narrator photographs he sees dilapidated buildings, streets gone to ruin, and signs of a failing republic. He sees what happens when people pursue a type of Utopian perfection. It always ends in ruin for themselves and for others outside of their ideal commune. He uses his historical renderings of Hitler's reign of terror in his disastrous attempt to create the perfect society. The narrator mentions the bombing of London by the Nazis which destroys the marble, chrome, crystal, and bronze decadence of the 1930s to ruins and ash. [13] He wonders if this had not happened what would the future be? He crosses over the mental divide between reason and imagination. Immediately, he hallucinates and sees a twelve engine plane that plays jazz (an idea of Dialta) and asks his friend, Merv Kihn, a free lance journalist specializing in conspiracy theories for help. Merv, who specializes in the weird, does not give much thought into anything. Merv dismisses his vision as semiotic phantoms which is his imagination merging with the realist thoughts in his mind.

Imagined Utopian Society in the "Gersnback Continuum"

What is a Perfect America?

After taking a three year old diet pill, experiencing stress, and a lack of rest while driving in search for more art he pulls over to a roadside and falls asleep. Immediately after dozing off, he hears voices and awakens to see an alternate reality. Everything around his is the modernity of Dialta's dream of a perfect 1930s America leads to a perfect 1980s America. Her "heirs to the dream" according to the narrator, are white skinned, blond haired, and probably blue eyed Americans. He now sees Dialta's vision of the world she is perceiving, her take on reality. The narrator disagrees with this perception and quickly finds as many articles to bring him back to his reality. He knows that America is not perfect and it never will be. What is a perfect America? Is it a country that is perfect if there is an elimination of certain groups of people? Do similarities instead of difference promote a happier sense of being? Dialta's dream of perfection is too similar to Hitler's dream of the Aryan race as perfection. The ideas of perfection in America is neither Utopian or catastrophic. Technology does not either perfect or destroy America. A perfect America is accepting that everything is not perfect and that is perfectly fine.

Criticism of "The Gernsback Continuum"

Although the "The Gernsback Continuum" positive reviews, there are some critics that dislike the literature. Bruce Sterling, author of "Preface" Burning Chrome, [14]writes that Gibson's work is nothing but a continuous unraveling of science fiction to fill up space. Author Carol McGuirk, author of “The `New' Romancers: Science Fiction Innovators from Gernsback to Gibson." Fiction 2000[15] writes that Gibson brings about the Golden Age of technological advances just to "what he sees as its negative optimism about technology". Technology is to Gibson unnecessary and a creator of over the top technology. Veronica Hollinger, author of “Cybernetic Deconstructions: Cyberpunk and Postmodernism.” Storming the Reality Studio. writes that Gibson "humorously ironizes an early 20th century futurism".[16]

@MarinChristina: In your section "What is a Perfect America", I like that you focus on the implications of Dialta's interest in 30s and 40s architecture. I wonder if the association the photographer has with that architecture is different than Dialta's association. From what I could tell, it seems the photographer is the one who initially connects the architecture with Hitler (even though it is American architecture) and his association leads him into his fantasy. Do you think it's possible to enjoy an aesthetic without agreeing with the worldview? Or is architecture inseparable from the worldview that produced it? (I'd like to think it is, but that's mostly because the 30s and 40s aesthetic is strange and interesting to me.) SaraKathryn (talk) - 22:37, 15 September 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: Some great observations. Incorporate your research into your work to support those observations (there are likely just some typos in your references). You should have one references section for your whole journal — not each section. Use real subheaders; I changed one for you. —Grlucas (talk) 12:36, 16 September 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: Your comment that a perfect America is just accepting it as is rang true when this short story was written, and rings even more true today, as history is showing us repeatedly that nothing can be perfect and an Utopian society only hurts or disappoints those who aim for it or search for it, and causes, like with Hitler's utopia, negative affects. The pursuit for perfection is a fools journey. Though we should always aim for perfection and to better ourselves, it needs to also be agreed by all that your perfection, my perfect, Dialta's perfection, and the main character of the story's perfection are probably not the same and cannot line up perfectly. Tprouty93 (talk) 23:33, 28 September 2019 (EDT)

September 15, 2009 Journal 6

In Episode 10 Season 3 of Doctor Who episode "Blink" the main themes are time travel and perception. Sally Sparrow is the main protagonist in the episode. She and her friend Katherine "Kathy" Costello investigate an abandoned house which has writings on one of its walls for Sally warning her to "beware of the weeping angels".[17] These Weeping Angels are evil time consumers. Kathy succumbs to a Weeping Angel and is transported to 1920. Kathy's sudden disappearance into another dimension is the same as the photographer's sudden appearance into another realm. The differences are the transports in "Blink" are sending the victims of the Weeping Angels to the past and in "The Gernsback Continuum" the photographer finds himself in an imagined future. Like Time is strangely unpredictable in both scenarios.

What is Time?

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, time is "a nonspatial continuum that is measured in terms of events which succeed one another from past through present to future".[18] In both cases of "The Gernsback Continuum" and "Blink", time is sporadically changing throughout both scenarios. For instance, normally when we think of time we think the past is the day before, the present is now, and the future is tomorrow. The paradox is that we do not really know if any of this is actually true. The Doctor is able to communicate from 1969 to the current year of 2007. He notes that people believe time is the result of cause and effect, but in reality it is a big ball of unexplainable things. When the Weeping Angels claim Detective Billy Shipton, he transports to 1969 and encounters the Doctor and his assistant. From there, he receives instruction with how to proceed with his new life and make contact with Sally in the present/future. Likewise, Kathy has instruction to proceed with her life and find a way to communicate with Sally in the present/future. Also, Kathy and Billy share Sally's presence into their new past lives. Kathy's daughter's name is Sally and Billy's wife's name is Sally as well.


Weeping Angel

Technology of the Past, Present, and Future

In both scenarios of "The Gernsback Continuum" and "Blink" technology is in ample use. The photographer in "The Gernsback Continuum" uses photography to document his craft. Additionally, there is a description of a large aircraft that can seat hundreds of people, and this futuristic 1930s theme Tucson of the 1980s the photographer encounters after taking a rest along a highway. The large aircraft's description is a "grandiose prop-driven airliner with a grand ballroom and two squash courts" designed in 1936. In the past/present/future merge the photographer notes that the "air thick with ships; giant wing-liners, mile-long blimps, and gyrocopters". [19] Just like in "Blink" time merges with the past, present, and the future. The photographer is currently living in the present, seeing things described from the past about the future, and simultaneously living in all three when he is observing this futuristic scene. In "Blink", digital versatile discs (DVDs) are in discussion in 1969 by people who came from 2007 yet are communicating with others in different periods of time that are all familiar with the present year of 2007.

Criticism of "Blink"

Robert A. Rushing, the author of “Blink: The Material Real in Cache, Mulholland Dr. and Doctor Who” writes that the premise of this episode is to remind viewers that we are not separate from what we observe from the perspective of others. We must use the ability to break up our expectations of our ideas and thoughts from what we perceive and how we interpret it. Rushing argues that "Blink" "calls attention to the material blind spot that we are not ordinarily cognizant of in thinking about visual media". When we take ourselves out of our element, forget our physical limitations and let ourselves just be we are able to bring awareness of things from the subconscious that will flow with what we see instead of making sense of time. [20] Time is, after all, a big ball of unexplainable things in reality.

September 19, 2019 Journal 7

"The X-Files: "Jose Chung's From Outer Space"

Aliens and memory loss cross paths in science fiction to the point where it can be hard to distinguish what is true and what is false. In Philip K. Dick's short story "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" and The X Files episode "Jose Chung's From Outer Space" the concept of what one perceives is sometimes different than what one remembers. The main protagonist in "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" is Douglas Quail. Douglas is an average working man who is not happy with his current life. He wants to go to Mars and explore it as a man on a mission. His fascination with Mars preoccupies his life. Kirsten, his wife, harbors animosity to him because his obsession with Mars is complicating their marital life. [21] They live in a world that in itself is alien like with futuristic depictions of robotic driving cars, telepathic implantation devices, colonies on Mars and undersea.

The main protagonists in The X-Files episode "Jose Chung's From Outer Space", are teenagers Chrissy and Harold. In contrast to the futuristic world Douglas and Kirsten reside, the teens' world is most realistic. There are no robotic cars or any other known colonies outside of Earth. Yet, the protagonists of both the short story and the television show have episodes of memory loss and trouble deciphering fact from fiction.

"We Can Remember It for You Wholesale"

Douglas takes his obsession with Mars to a company Rekal Incorporated. Rekal Incorporated specialty is planting false memories with physical mementos as evidence of having been to someplace. A trip to Mars is too costly and dangerous. Therefore, Douglas goes to Rekal for help. During the implantation process old memories of himself actually being a mercenary in Mars enters his memory. Confused, Douglas thinks the implantation is a false memory and gets his money back.The staff at Rekal knew that his memories are real and they convinced him that everything was in his imagination. Douglas agrees because he does not believe he can be anything extraordinary like an assassin. Until Douglas remembers the items he smuggled from Mars in his memory. He finds proof of dried worms and fauna in his dresser. [22] Paranoia fills Douglas and he remembers his past life completely. Two soldiers try to apprehend Douglas, but he escapes. The guards that confronted him demand Douglass to turn himself in. He offers to have his memory erased and replaced with another fantasy of his from his past. He remembers finding aliens who were going to destroy Earth, but instead of harming them, he is kind to them. In reward for his kindness, the aliens vow to not destroy Earth as long as he is alive. Seemingly this idea of replacing his memory of Mars with this memory is for the best. Rekal Incorporated try to implant this fantasy but soon realize that Douglas actually remembers this from his childhood.

Conclusion

Chrissy and Harold's abduction by aliens post memories are at first contradictory and then parallel. First, Chrissy's memory of the abduction is her being attached to a wall on a spaceship surrounded by aliens and Harold is confined on a table. She says that the aliens are "inside my mind, stealing my memories".[23] Harold's memory differs than Chrissy's version. Harold says they are in a cage with him being awake and Chrissy asleep. There is an alien in another cage smoking a cigarette. A vault opens and Chrissy is abducted into the light. The Alien speaks in English repeating, "this is not happening", and then Harold is abducted too. He recalls being tortured like a bug and later flying in the air before hitting the ground outside and checking on grounded Chrissy. Afterwards, Chrissy is hypnotized again and retells a story like Harold's about being beaten and flying in the air. However, she mentions in her hypnosis that she had been surrounded by Airmen and she was hypnotized by them. Chrissy says that they were "stealing my memories"[24].

Even Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents Detective Mulder and Detective Skully have their memories erased and altered. Mulder remembers speaking with a lieutenant that was a part of the abduction plan at a diner. However, the diner worker says Mulder ordered sweet potato pies and asked him questions about aliens. Skully retrieved ice in her hotel room while Mulder was confronted by the Men in Black. Mulder remembers his memory, yet the diner worker contradict Mulder's account. Skully does not remember her memory, but Mulder does remember[25].

@MarinChristina:: Great journal entry! I like that you bring up the alien who speaks English. Based on what the audience knows at the end of the episode, do you think that alien was real? Could it have been an airman that Harold believes is an alien after he is hypnotized? Or do you think the alien could have been really an alien? -Cavaliergirl96 (talk) 08:37, 23 September 2019 (EDT)

September 22, 2019 Journal 8

Perspective

All together, the main protagonists all share a common theme of memory loss and memory erasure. In each of their stories, their memories have been erased and replaced. They all are sure but yet unsure of what they had really saw. They all question their sanity whether it is by internal or external actions. Critics review of "We Can Remember it For You Wholesale"and Season 3 Episode 20 of The X-Files Jose Chung's "From Outer Space" are thought provoking. Chris B. of Doux Reviews review of "Jose Chung's "From Outer Space" writes, "truth can be manipulated and perceptions are colored by pop culture". Additionally, an unknown blogger for Wordpress writes about "We Can Remember it For You Wholesale" discuss morality. The blogger writes that the "moral heart of the story is Douglas's childhood act of empathy". Empathy trumps his career as an Interplan agent. The intrigue of being an assassin is "meaningless compared to the one act of kindness". Furthermore, Douglas is in the state between the "tension of the world we live in and the world we dream to live in". Philip K. Dick's short story is all about morals and finding stability in an unstable environment. He also is connecting how the government finds ways to infiltrate into the daily lives of its citizens by suppressing their voices and literally get into their heads.

@MarinChristina: I also discussed how they share a common theme of false memory and memory manipulation. I went into detail about how Chrissy and Doug both had run-ins with the military. Your post has some great points! Also just as a helpful tip, you have the year as 2009 instead of 2019 for your journal post title! Brebre143 (talk) 19:28, 22 September 2019 (EDT)
@Brebre143: Thank you for correcting my typo! MarinChristina (talk) 20:50, 22 September 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: I like that you pointed out that even Mulder and Scully, the characters whose perspectives the show follows, were shown to have unreliable memories. It's like having an unreliable narrator in a story. Jose Chung, I guess, had a lot of them. It's silly to think Mulder sat at the counter and ate a whole pie, but then again his account of what happened doesn't make sense either. But why would the cook lie about it? I know one thing... this episode made me want even less to have to sit in front of a jury! -MorganAtMGA (talk) 21:15, 22 September 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: Good, but you should be using secondary sources for support. Did you proofread? Please see my feedback that I will be updating through the day on 9/24/19. —Grlucas (talk) 07:50, 24 September 2019 (EDT)


September 29 Journal 9- Lowered Expectations

"The Girl Who Was Plugged In"

In the short story by James Tiptree, Jr., "The Girl Who Was Plugged In", it is understood that in this highly technologically integrated society that perfection is key to success. Corporate companies are in the business to sell perfection onto the citizens to increase marketability and profits. For this to be successful, the corporate companies use beautiful young people to be seen wear, use, and drive promotional items. Advertisement is not legal, but corporate companies make a loophole by using these beautiful people as their spokespeople. Everyone idolizes people who look physically ideal. The companies use perfect life like human robots who's thoughts and actions are made through connections from their encased human counterparts. The main character Philadelphia Burke is an outcast. She has a pituitary disorder that has her face appear bloated, her back in a hump, and she has difficulty speaking.

Philadelphia is made to be the operator of a perfect teen named Delphi. When Philadelphia was simply her, everyone had been disgusted by her appearance. No one would have put their hands on her or show affection. However, as Delphi men could not keep their hands off of her and she is given so much attention that it overwhelms her at times. Philadelphia as Delphi is living the life she had always wanted. Her fantasy of living as Delphi bleeds into her real life as Philadelphia. This story is stating that women are seen as objects, not as actual people. When Philadelphia is herself, she is "bloated, ugly, hideous, etc.," because she has a pituitary disorder. People judge her for her physical appearance and not her as a character. When she is Delphi people notice her figure, her body enhancements, hair, skin, eyes, etc., but ignore the fact that she appears to be clueless. No one doubts that she is not a human because they only see her physical enhancements and not her behavior. Tiptree, Jr., is really describing celebrities and how their influence affects those who idolize them. Women, especially young teenagers, look up to celebrities because their beauty (from physical or natural enhancements) gives them popularity, adoration, and wealth. Women may feel that they themselves are "ugly" because they do not look like a "perfect" woman. Men, in this case older men, take advantage of the young women's beauty for their own gratification.

Criticism

Heather J. Hicks, author of "Whatever It Is That She's Since Become": Writing Bodies of Text and Bodies of Women in James Tiptree Jr.'s "The Girl Who Was Plugged In and William Gibson's "The Winter Market", writes of a literature movement called cyberpunk. Cyberpunk, according to Hicks, is Tiptree, Jr.'s disembodiment over embodiment in science fiction literature. Philadelphia's disillusionment on perfection cause her to lose her identity. Philadelphia 's descriptions as hulk-like, brutish, rancid, ill-shaped, a carcass, a monster, a blind mole woman, gutter-meat, and having paws instead of hands is disparaging. [26] Young girls like her put themselves down because of society and the public's false propaganda of women who are the ideal standards of beauty. Philadelphia experiences this first hand after her boyfriend falls in love with Delphi because of her outward beauty and is disgusted with who Delphi really is physically. Philadelphia dies because of his disgust with her with his belief that she was the one holding Delphi hostage. In the end, Delphi or Philadelphia do not matter to anyone anymore. Philadelphia is disposed of and Delphi is being reset to fit for another person. Their personas are nothing to these jaded people.

Ideal Celebrity Beauty

[[2]]

@MarinChristina: No one wants to read big blocks of text on screen. See the beginning lesson 3 again: formatting basics. What's going on with your references? You should see me. —Grlucas (talk) 12:05, 30 September 2019 (EDT)

@Grlucas: So I should break down everything into sections? Are we doing both references and bibliographies? MarinChristina (talk) 19:25, 5 October 2019 (EDT)

September 29, 2019 Journal 10 Seeing Is Believing and Believing Is Seeing

"Black Mirror: The Entire History of You"

There is one common theme in James Tiptree, Jr.'s "The Girl Who Was Plugged In" and Season 1 Episode 3 of "Black Mirror: The Entire History of You" that is shared between Philadelphia and Liam, the husband of Fi. Both characters are in search of something they are curious about and want to experience it through the eyes of another, but simultaneously needing to believe it is what they think subconsciously. The need to satisfy curiosity but the inability to deal with the consequences of it is their connection. Philadelphia wants desperately to feel wanted. She wants to experience life as a beautiful person. When she sees how the public treats her as Delphi and she compares that to how she is treated as herself, she disassociates herself from her body. She sees what she has always believed and now she believes what she is seeing. Philadelphia believes that she will only find love as Delphi. Her belief is so strong that she strongly becomes attached to Delphi and believes that through Delphi she is living as a beautiful person. On the other hand, Liam sees that his wife Ffi is being too cozy with a friend of hers named Jonas.

Analysis

Liam suspects that she and Jonas had an affair or is having an affair. He uses his grain to replay scenes and images in his head trying to see what he wants to believe. Eventually he finds evidence proving what he saw is to be believed. His obsession with finding out if what he saw is true caused him to lash out and his family leave out. David Roche, author of "You Know When You Suspect Something, It's Always Better When It Turns Out To Be True" [27] writes that the use of technology is problematic in relationships when one sees what they believe and cannot really determine between real and virtual. The truth to this is that both Philadelphia and Liam are too engrossed with viewing their relationships through technology that they cannot see the problems by using only their minds. They do not need to live through another person or replay events. Philadelphia would have been better off explaining who she really is or focus on bettering herself. Liam would have been better off by talking with his wife or going to a marriage counselor to sort out their issues. His wife's unfaithfulness is a big concern and the reality that they keep secrets and thoughts to themselves would need mediation.

October 5, 2019 Journal 11: Harvesting Humans

"Blood Child"

In the short story Bloodchild, by Octavia Butler, the roles of humans and aliens are reversed. Traditionally in science fiction it is the humans that are the majority and in charge. In this story, the humans are like farm animals. The alien creatures are called Tlic and the humans are called Terrans. Together they share the same planet. However, the Tlic live free and the Terrans live on a Preserve that protects them from the Tlic. The Terrans are used as incubators for the Tlics offspring.

Aliens are the New Humans

In "Bloodchild", the humans are invaders of the Tlic planet. The humans fled from their homeworld where other humans were killed and enslaved to the Tlic planet for refuge. When humans had first encountered Tlics they tried to kill them because they saw them as worms. In return, the Tlics annihilated human campgrounds until they learned to harvest humans for their offspring[28].


Healthy humans are high quality for wealthy Tlics looking human incubators. Humans make good investments and their bodies can be used several times before they need to be put down. This is no different than dairy cows and eating them when they can't be milked anymore. Humans have been hunted, kidnapped, and their families broken up. No human has a voice in not being owned by a Tlic and they cannot overpower them either. Some Tlics take care of their humans, while others abuse and abandon them leaving their offspring to eat off their dying flesh. In science fiction, the point of view is from a human perspective, but in "Bloodchild" it is from the human view as an alien.

Wrapping It All Up

"Bloodchild" is a science fiction story with animal rights activism in it. The Tlic in charge of the family is T'Gatoi. The other main characters are the Terrans Gan, his mom Lien, his older brother Qui, and his younger sister Hoa. Terrans, like animals, have no voice. They are powerless against humans. Humans break up animals (separating calves from their mothers for example), kidnapping and captivating animals (stealing animals from the wild and putting them in zoos), and killing them for their own uses. Terrans live on a Preserve like animals on a farm. Science fiction in this story puts human characteristics into aliens thereby challenging the perspectives of voiceless and defenseless animals. Lien, Gan's mom, worries that her son will be sold as soon as he gained weight. This is like a healthy goat that is big enough for the slaughterhouse. The scene when N'Tlic Brian Lomas is cut open to retrieve the baby worms is like animal slaughter. Brian wore an identification armband that identified who he was and who was his owner like a cow wearing an ear tag. Clearly Brian was saved, but not freed. After his Tlic died, he was put into the care of her sterile sister. Butler addresses human characteristics of compassion, fear, and confusion into the harvested Terrans.

@MarinChristina: I really like this post. The way you have it structured makes it very easy to read and understand. I also like you idea of the humans being cash cows for the Tlic. Christina.moore2 (talk) 15:55, 6 October 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: I really liked how you provided insight to the idea of science fiction writers using their stories to represent social and environmental issues present in today's society. I spoke on the idea of racism in the episode of deep space nine and completely over looked the fact that in the story the hierarchy of the two species is in fact animal/insect. It seems that science fiction uses its concepts of robotics, extraterrestrial life, space and time travel to bring forth bigger meanings or pictures to us as readers. --D.Sams96 (talk) 16:22, 6 October 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: Great post. I like that you pointed out humans being the invaders to begin with. And I agree, humans aren't known for always treating livestock well, so it's a scary thing to imagine us being treated like that by powerful aliens. Octavia Butler did a great job in this story of exploring humanity's attitudes toward space travel and other species and how they might look from the other side. -MorganAtMGA (talk) 19:38, 6 October 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: Your titles are still incorrect. Please review: “Writing in the Liberal Arts” again. Your references are a mess, when you use them. While you make some good points here, you use no secondary sources — a requirement of these posts. Please make a point of signing up for a face-to-face session. I'm requiring this for you. Thanks. —Grlucas (talk) 10:30, 7 October 2019 (EDT)

October 6, 2019 Journal 12: Fighting Aliens, Blasting Spaceships, and Sabering Misconceptions of Science Fiction Writers

Commonalities

Octavia Butler and Captain Benjamin Sisko have a shared commonality. They both are African Americans and have major influence in science fiction. Science fiction has been primarily dominated by white, middle aged men. Authors like Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, and Philip K. Dick works all have been published and widely circulated. When we think of science fiction, we often imagine aliens invading earth, robots controlling humans, and the main characters as white. Women in science fiction are rare, but African American women and men writers are rarer.

Challenging Misconceptions Through Words

In Star Trek Episode Deep Space Nine, Captain Sisko ends up in a past dimension of America in the 1950a. In the 1950s, segregation was in effect and prejudices against African Americans was all over the country. Sisko's character as a science fiction writer breaks the unaddressed myths in science fiction. Myth One: Black people do not read or write science fiction. Sisko and Butler break this myth. Sisko's character is a gifted writer in a magazine company that specialized in publishing sci-fi print. The reactions Sisko received when his paper was read showed that his talent is good enough to be published. Unfortunately, because he is black the magazine publisher refused to publish it. Myth Two: A black man cannot be the lead of a science fiction role. Myth Three: A black man cannot be a captain of a spaceship over white people. In this episode, Sisko debunked the prejudices of these myths.

Breaking Through Preconceived Perceptions

In science fiction, readers assume the characters are white, the authors are white males, aliens invade the earth, and the point of view is from the humans. Butler broke those preconceived perceptions in "Bloodchild". In her story, the aliens are the humans, the author is a black woman, the point of view is from the aliens, and the people are of color. The names of the characters are Chinese in origin. Butler brought complexity to her story. Her writing challenged how we limit the scope of science fiction with our assumptions that the author is not a woman, a person of color, the aliens are aliens, and the main characters are all white.

{reply to|MarinChristina}} You did a great job at tying the two stories together. I definitely agree that Sisko and Butler break the myths of Black people in Science Fiction. Great post! Brebre143 (talk) 00:08, 7 October 2019 (EDT)

October 13, 2019 Journal 13: Fight for Life in the Universe

Humans are one of the most sophisticate and intellectual species on Earth. As sophisticate and intellectual beings, humans believe themselves as superior enough over other living beings on Earth. Therefore, they move on to explore the universe and attempt to colonize space. The universe is always expanding. There are planets and other living beings that may be far more sophisticate, intelligent, and technologically advanced than Earthlings. Space is not like Earth. Space is hostile, wrathful, and dangerous. Curiosity of humans in the present tense have space scientists send rocket, satellites, and astronauts outside of the orbit to find life outside of Earth. Science fiction explores how technology pushes humans into the different realms of the universe that is unwelcoming of human invaders. Life on Earth has morals, compassion, and empathy, however in the universe those ethics have no place. Outside of Earth, all humans are inferior to space.

Battlestar Galactica

Life and morality are the major themes in Battlestar Galactica Episode 33. The frequent casualties of the human ships by the robotic species the Cylons devastate the population of humans in space. While the human population is in a drastic decline, the Cylon population is increasing because of their ability to reproduce mechanically. Thousands of families fleeing through the universe have been killed or declared as missing after the most recent Cylon attacks. A crew member of the Battlestar Galactica, Gaius Baltar, is in a intimate relationship with a Cylon named Six. The question of repopulating the population comes up between Six and Baltar. This episode brings forth a possible solution to the declining population, but it has no merit in morality because the Cylons are the reasons why the humans are dying. Humans act as a substitute for God in the decision to end or bring forth life. A passenger ship The Olympic is supposed to have human souls aboard prior to its disappearance. Commander Adama and Laura Restlin make the difficult decision to destroy the missile toting ship killing possible lives aboard or sacrificing the crew. A new birth of a baby boy on a passenger ship the Rising Star brought hope that the human population has a chance to survive.

Critical Commentary of Battlestar Galactica

Critics of Battlestar Galactica like Geoff Ryman [29] blames human interference with pushing technology into advanced stages beyond human control. Artificial intelligence implantation from humans is how outside of Earth, robots like the Cylons are more intelligent and rebellious against the humans whom gave them their lives.[30] Ryman argues that the future depicted in Battlestar Galactica is too similar to Earth in the present tense to really explore how the universe and technology changes human survival in the far out future. Additionally, author Lorna Jowett [31] argues that the fight for life in space is futile as the artificial intelligence of the Cylons will eventually wipe out the human species. Six, the Cylon in a relationship with Baltar, has human features and the abilities to think and act like a human. Eventually Cylons, like Six, will mimic human reproduction methods to produce an intermix of Cylon-humans, thus further declining the numbers of whole humans.[32]

Conclusion

Deciding who has the right to live and to die is morally conflicting. Humans are killing Cylons and Cylons are killing humans. Both have a right to live and die on their own terms, but the conflict between them stems from humans being in space. Humans created artificial intelligence that became more superior than them. The universe is not meant to be colonized. Lives have been lost by thousands because of human exploration into space. The morals and logic humans carried from Earth does not fit into the universe outside of Earth. The loss and gain of human lives is the cause and effect of humans inability to adapt to life outside of Earth.

@MarinChristina: You had a very interesting take on this this episode. I never thought to look at it from the point of view that humans were taking on the role of God. Good post! Brebre143 (talk) 21:31, 13 October 2019 (EDT)
@Brebre143: thank you for your comment! MarinChristina (talk) 21:50, 13 October 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: The Cylons really interested me so I decided to do more research on them as I am not familiar with the Battlestar Galactia series. I found that there are other humanoid Cylons like Six; these are referred to by numbers 1-8. They each have different traits and the only one that has been successful at reproducing naturally is the number 8, which is Lt. Sharon! Just thinking about an AI like Cylon’s actually existing is quite frightening, because how would you be able to tell them apart from humans?--Daisja30 (talk) 21:54, 13 October 2019 (EDT)
@Daisja30: That would be interesting, yet scary, having Cylons reproduce naturally like Number 8! Their advanced abilities to mimic humans and have internal organs and a sophisticated circulatory system, etc. could be the end of humanity in that case. To me, I do not understand how technology in Battlestar Galactica got so out of hand for AI to be as equal or superior than past humans that gave their ancestors lives. MarinChristina (talk) 20
44, 17 October 2019 (EDT)

October 13, 2019 Journal 14: No Empathy in a Cold Universe

Tom Godwin's "The Cold Equations" does not emphasize so much on the alien technology like Battlestar Galactica. Godwin's story is about morality and who determines life or death. The similarities of "The Cold Equations" and Episode 33 of Battlestar Galactica is the universe. In both scenarios, life outside of Earth has been the norm for hundreds of years. Human invasion and colonization of space brings with them advanced technology that does not often work in their favor. They both have moral dilemmas that places them as judges of life. Are we still human enough to have compassion or moral objectivity or is this a dog eat dog universe?

"The Cold Equations"

Tom Godwin wrote "The Cold Equations" in 1954. His depiction of the main characters are a male pilot named Barton and an eighteen year old female stowaway named Marilyn. In Christian tradition, God is a man. Barton, the pilot is acting the role of God. He debates between sending Marilyn to her death and finding some kind of solution to save her. Morally he knows that his decision to kill her is wrong, but he must obey the rules of law in space. The main issue in this story is life and who will act in the role of God. Barton had to decide by not killing Marilyn he would not only doom himself and her, but he would also be killing the six men on Woden waiting for the Kala fever serum.

Criticism of "The Cold Equations"

Critic Anders Sandberg [33] argues that Godwin, as the author, intentionally did not want to come up with an alternative to killing Marilyn. Sanders debates the issue that Godwin used Barton as a point of view from God's perspective. In addition to Sandberg's criticism, Godwin blamed everything on Marilyn, but not on the pilot Barton. Barton did not check the closet for stowaways prior to takeoff. Also, there were no mathematical solutions or options in case a stowaway was aboard to not have him or her killed. The precious cargo is not in good care if the transport physically is incapable of making long distances with quick fuel loss and poor calibrations of design.

Final Thought

Life is precious and there are times when tough decisions are to be made in saving or losing lives. Humans in both scenarios are unprepared to have to make these tough decisions in space. The universe is a hostile, unpredictable, and inhospitable realm that is not made for humans to live outside of Earth. Morality has no place in the universe because there are no ethics in space. Humans are another varying object in space. Technological advances are best on Earth and not to be taken out into the universe for colonization or exploration. The universe is stronger and more adaptable than humans and has no compassion or other feelings in the manner of life and death.

@MarinChristina: I also found your take on the aspect of humans trying to be God in both stories interesting. However, I do not agree with the critic on Barton’s reluctance to jettison Marylin. As soon as he saw that the stowaway was a teenage girl with pure intentions, he began to feel regret for what he would have to do before doing it. I think Godwin intentionally adds this element to show that no matter how much science and tech evolve, human morality never changes.--Daisja30 (talk) 22:05, 13 October 2019 (EDT)

October 19, 2019 Journal 15: The Butterfly Effect in Star Trek

"The City on the Edge of Forever"

Star Trek's twenty-eighth episode "The City on the Edge of Forever" is a play on the Butterfly EffectTheory. Theoretically, a small change in the past can catastrophically affect the future. Doctor McCoy's accidental injection of a dangerous medicine had led to a brief insanity which he had teleport himself to another planet. On the planet is a giant, illuminated stone ring known as "The Guardian of Forever". McCoy's leap into the doorway of the ring created a "butterfly effect". McCoy's disturbance of the past would alter the future unless he is stopped from distorting the past.

@MarinChristina: I really like that you mentioned the take on the Butterfly Effect. I have always been so fascinated with that, and I liked how the episode used it. Great Post! Christina.moore2 (talk) 16:18, 20 October 2019 (EDT)

Altered History

The idea of a single, business running woman with ideas on space and time theories and space exploration, during the 1930s Great Depression Era, is a revolutionary. Women in history are not given much credit in the field of science and space exploration. However, instead of steering the episode into Edith Keeler's radical ideas to be of use, the episode centers on Edith Keeler's life as a pacifist who would destroy the world if she lives through the Depression Era. McCoy's interception into the past would have him save Edith from dying like she was meant to do in the normal course of history. History are events that change everyday. The past can be perceived differently by individuals, therefore each individual is free to interpret what was learned. Narratives in history are important to reflect on the past to understand how the past, present, and future are all affected. The "Guardian of Forever" shows past events as a film. When a movie is already written, produced, and showcased there can not be changes to the original, but just revisions. The film of the past is unchangeable. History cannot be changed, but it can be revised by one's own historical narrative interpretation.

Conflicts of the Heart

One of the main themes in this episode is the desire to alter the past at the potential risk of dooming mankind. Captain Kirk infatuation with Edith had him debate with himself to either save Edith or let her die as her destiny dictates. Additionally, Kirk saved Edith from breaking her neck on the stairs which could have thrown a major snag in the "Butterfly Effect" theory. Mr. Spock is the rational one in this episode. He knows that with Edith's death, the Enterprise, humanity, and alien kind will still be in existence. On the other hand, McCoy, like Dr. Kirk, has a connection with Edith. Edith treats McCoy with respect and nursed him back to health during his erratic state of mind. Edith tells McCoy that she is his friend and sees him no different than anyone else. McCoy would have saved Edith from her accident because he did not want her to die. Kirk must determine what is more important. On one hand, saving Edith would give Kirk his chance to save the woman he loves. On the other hand, saving Edith would end the world under Nazi control and the Enterprise would never exist.

Psychoanalysis Review on "The City on the Edge of Forever"

Interestingly, author Thomas H. Picard of Star Trek: A Psychoanalysis [34] writes that Kirk and Edith's relationship is akin to a son in search of nurturing from a mother. Kirk does not have a maternal figure in his past and in Edith he finds what he had been missing. Picard recounts Edith's nurturing nature and affection as a substitute to meet Kirk's emotional needs. Furthmore, Picard argues that the tough choice Kirk made in allowing Edith to die is cutting the connection with the mother figure. Spock represents logic. McCoy represents childhood angst, and Kirk is need of nurturing. Picard regards this complex trio as an Oedipus complex. Although, the Oedipus complex and the Butterfly Effect are two different theories, the two theories do relate to each other very well. The strong emotional attachments of Kirk and McCoy to Edith and the cool logic of Spock work together in understanding the historical narrative's causes and effects.

October 20, 2019: Journal 16- Movies R' Us

Tim Pratt's "Impossible Dreams"[35] vaguely mirrors Star Trek's "The City on the Edge of Forever". First, in both scenarios are alternate universes set in alternate dimensions. Second, both incorporate the Butterfly Effect Theory. Third, the male protagonists and the female protagonists have a romantic infatuation with one another, respectively. Changes in the other dimension has a noticeable large impact in both cases.

"Impossible Dreams"

Pete, the main protagonist in "Impossible Dreams" is like Captain Kirk in Star Trek. Both characters are missing something fulfilling in their lives yet they do not know as of yet what it is they are missing. Pete's adoration of movies is unseemly at first. The movies range from classic films to science fiction. However, the movies in his universe and the universe of the second protagonist, Ally have a historical root like "The City on the Edge of Forever". Changes in Captain Kirk's universe and Pete's universe both involve historical changes. In the case of Kirk, saving his romantic interest would doom the world. For Pete, it is in Ally's world that changes her universe had changes made to the film industry, financial currency, and entertainment merchandise. Ally's universe also has a dystopian inclination where money is so hard she barely has enough food to eat. For instance, there is a $300 charge to rent a DVD player and it costs $3.18 to rent one DVD.[36] Whereas, normally to rent a movie the rate is around $1.75.

Connections in History

The bulk of the movies are from the 1930s and 1940s in "Impossible Dreams" and in "The City on the Edge of Forever" the troopers visit 1930s Chicago. The time frame of the Great Depression merged with the present day/ future is well crafted. Kirk and Pete are both aware that they are in a parallel universe. Between these parallel universes a slight change in events created a domino effect. The slight change of a director's opinion or an actor's decision to take a role had likely occurred in the 1930s. Noticeably, Ally did not recognize President Franklin Delano Roosevelt on the dime. Roosevelt was president from 1933-1945 around the same times as the films Pete encountered in the Impossible Dreams store. Other notable changes are actors living longer in the alternate universe and famous actors in the present are either not as famous or non existent. Additionally, in Star Trek, the slight change of saving Edith would drastically change the ally victory of World War II. Also, the event of World War II is from 1939 to 1945 around the same time frames as the movies Gone with the Wind and Casablanca.

Putting Together "Impossible Dreams" with "The City of the Edge of Forever"

There is another important connection between "Impossible Dreams" and "The City on the Edge of Forever". Since both are closely dated to the beginning of World War II the main catalyst in Ally's universe that links to the Star Trek parallel universe is the atomic bomb. Edith's survival would have made her a popular pacifist, thus delaying the United States' entrance into the war zone therefore, giving Nazi Germany the advantage. In Star Trek, the Nazis created the atomic bomb. While, President Roosevelt does not exist as a president is that the ripple change in movies led to the American invasion of Japan. In World War II, it was the Japanese that attacked the United States first with the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Since the Americans invaded Japan, there was no reason for the atomic bomb to be launched on Hiroshima, Japan in retaliation for Pearl Harbor.

@MarinChristina: Impressive finds in the connections to history! I also mentioned the connections but did not go in depth as you did. Nonetheless, I think these connections hint at how important it is to elect the right people in office. As you mention, in Ally’s world there was a different president, or two, which lead to no bombing of Japan, and in Edith’s world, the fate of the U.S is riding on if she becomes president or not.--Daisja30 (talk) 22:22, 20 October 2019 (EDT)
@MarinChristina: Solid references throughout. There should be no space before a footnote, and generally references should appear at the end of the sentence. Look up how to correctly use a reference twice. Also, how do you link to Wikipedia entries? —Grlucas (talk) 07:43, 21 October 2019 (EDT)

October 27, 2019 Journal 17- Love in an Open Space

San Junipero

Black Mirror's "San Junipero"'s main topic is either to live as your true self alive after death, or die without being yourself. In San Junipero, people can be their authentic selves without judgment or any repercussions. They are dead in the real world, but their souls are alive in San Junipero forever. San Junipero examines the topic of a patient's choice of dying on one's own terms.

San Junipero- A Heaven on Earth

The main protagonists in San Junipero are Kelly and Yorkie. Kelly, an outgoing young woman, has a strong personality and freedom that is opposite of Yorkie. Yorkie is demure and a loner. Both women have lived in a time where their sexual preferences for women would have isolated them from friends, family, and associates. After Yorkie and Kelly are intimate, Kelly disengaged herself from the relationship. Struggling with her identity, Kelly moved from the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s. Kelly used running away to stop her feelings of attraction and guilt she has for Yorkie. San Junipero's heaven like setting allows the people to live in any decade they like and reside in any home of their choosing. The appeal of staying young and free is too good to not turn down. Death will never come and everyone will stay the same age and be free from disease, illness, and aging forever.

@MarinChristina: Hello, you have a solid post but your statements need to be supported by facts. I don't think that it is heaven on earth but a second chance at living life.--TSmith2020 (talk) 23:50, 27 October 2019 (EDT)

@TSmith2020: Facts to support heaven on earth? A "heaven on earth" is a figure of speech, which is my own opinion of the situation. It is possible to have a place that you visit and say "this place is like heaven on earth". Thanks for your input. MarinChristina (talk) 16:25, 3 November 2019 (EST)

Critical Evaluation of San Junipero

Medical doctor Sean F. Timpane and psychiatric-neurological pharmacist Julie McBee's review of "San Junipero" make a critical observation of the episode[37]. Clearly, the episode leans towards recent debates of patients decisions to end their lives by their own choices. Kelly and Yorkie's decisions to live as autonomous people instead of conforming the traditional wait for death. Yorkie has been in a vegetative state for forty years. Kelly is dying from metastatic cancer. The argument for the right to choose is to end their lives from prolonged unnecessary pains and inconveniences is vital in the perseverance of dignity. Additionally, Timpane and McBee refer to death as a "reality and inevitability". In other words, death is a fact of life that cannot be avoided. Although souls can live on in San Junipero, they are still dead. There is no actual living in this heaven on earth. No one can really enjoy the things that was once enjoyed in life. Timpane and McBee reference to the "Quagmire" is an example of living in an afterlife that has no meaning. Life is a person is really non-existent. Fights and rambunctious behavior are frequent outlets to feel alive.

@Marin Christina: I agree that the vr allows the characters to live the lives that they have always wanted. However, do you think there is ever a time where the excitement of living immortally in a virtual reality fades away? I think it would get pretty boring after a while because eventually a person would run out of ideas of how to keep themselves entertained. It's as if they do not understand how long forever is.--Daisja30 (talk) 23:58, 27 October 2019 (EDT)

October 27 Journal 18- Lost and Confused

Staying Behind

Ken Liu's "Staying Behind" has the right to die choice theme like in Black Mirror's San Junipero. The major conflict in "Staying Behind" is not interfering in a person's choice in the right to die debate. Unlike San Junipero, people in "Staying Behind" live in a world of anarchy and dystopia. There is little reason to continue living in this world. When the option of living in a new realm where the physical body is destroyed, but the soul is saved through a digital upload leans toward the right to live debate.

Staying or Leaving

The debates between a person's right to live or die is determined by the individual. Every case is different for every situation. However in "Staying Behind", Liu argues that all lives have a purpose whether they like it or not. Liu has a religious outlook in the very beginning of the story. Adam is the Biblical first man and the digitization of man's soul is denounced by the Pope, the head of the Roman Catholic Church. Every person must go through the cycle of life. There is no escape from death as well as no guarantee there is a life after death for those who chose how they were to die.

Opposite Sides

The unnamed protagonist witnessed his mother's wish to die a natural death obstructed by his father's wish to digitize her instead. Proponents of the right to die argue that no person should be made to end their lives by unnatural means. His fear is that Lucy, his daughter, would be persuaded to end her physical life to live in this undetermined utopia. Human lives are more than just going through everyday modes of survival. Life is unpredictable, but no one should quit living when things do not go as expected. Unlike San Junipero, the dead appear as robotic forms of their old selves. Also, those that chose to end their lives were not facing terminal illnesses. Their actions are similar to committing suicide.

Critical Observation

Clarkesworld Magazine made the critical observation of "Staying Behind" and the digitized dead as zombies that prey on susceptible children and their protective parents. A few great observations made is about the basic foundation of the story. The story is full of holes that are not explained and that contrast with the plot. How is the project to digitize humans financially supported? What happens to the physical remains of the dead? The main issue of the text is what is the better solution. Is it better to die through the cases of life? Or is it better to die on your own terms, but not know exactly what is to become of you afterwards[38]?

@MarinChristina: Something that I had not thought about until reading your post and acknowledging the idea of suicide is how both stories bring into question the legitimacy of voluntary euthanasia for humans and what makes it any different than suicide. While it is the efforts of people being made in the hopes to end their life in a painless manner, what makes it any different than someone emotionally hoping to end their life and reduce their level of pain, and ultimately, are we not all terminal since there is no way to physically dodge the nature of death? Tprouty93 (talk) 01:18, 28 October 2019 (EDT)

@Tprouty93: The difference in someone that is in physical pain as a result from terminal causes and a person who's emotional pain is mental is the physical is permanent. Emotional pain can be treated with medication, counseling, alternative therapy, and so on. Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. What emotional time a person is going through can be alleviated unlike someone that is in stage 4 of bone cancer. Although, we all are terminal, we cannot make access to those who have no actual basis to support their decision of assisted suicide. MarinChristina (talk) 15:29, 3 November 2019 (EST)

November 3, 2019- Journal 19: Tech Made Me Do It

"Hang the DJ"

In Black Mirror's episode "Hang the DJ", dating apps have taken over a person's instinctual choices in choosing a romantic partner. Every participant in the dating system must accept a date from a computer generated match compatibility. Technology in this case is powerful. People can not independently choose partners that are not adept to their wants in a partner. The app puts strangers together in an apartment on the first night of meeting a person. Every other scenario is straight to intercourse without the intimacy. People are made to stay in relationships they are literally counting down the days until it ends. No one questions the app. If a person was to rebel there is some form of punishment. The app is a god in a machine because the followers are obedient to its command and fear banishment if disobedient. Amy and Frank are the two protagonists in the episode. They both are attracted to each other and felt comfortable enough to share a moment of intimacy that did not involve anything sexual. When they were divided they still wanted to be together, but did the will of the "coach" until they were together again. Technology like the coach app can have control over people if they allow it. No one is subjected to find a perfect match because that is improbable. The odds of finding a perfect match is determinable by fate- time, place, attraction, personality, etc. Technological dating apps can not determine compatible connections of a timed relationship. People need to have a say in how long the interaction should last.

Critical Reception

Black Mirror's "Hang the DJ" is compared to the episode "San Junipero" with love in a virtual reality world. Kelly and Yorkie in "San Junipero" are like Amy and Frank in the case of both couples living in a virtual world that they have not met in person. Their experiences are simulations and they are being their authentic selves without the pressure of actually being together. Many people hide their personalities for the sake of making a good impression when meeting a potential romantic partner. Technology opens the door for those who crave love and human connection, but are incapable of doing so independently. In the Daily Beast Amy and Frank's comparison to Kelly and Yorkie is that the machines had the power over them, but both of them accepted their fate by choosing to be together.They did not separate themselves because of a technological barrier.[39]

@MarinChristina: I think that technology is hindering communication skills between humans because they can hide behind a screen and be who they want to portray their selves as. In the works for this week's case, some of the partners didn't want each other or wanted each other only to gain experience. That is the only thing they gain out of the interaction. There is not a love connection between the two partners. Also, the link for your source is miss placed in the citation.

November 3, 2019- Journal 20: A Catastrophic Glitch

"Maneki"

Bruce Sterling's "Maneki"[40] explores the human enslavement to technology. Almost everyone in this universe has an addiction with technology. Whether it is at home, at work, commutes, or entertainment, everyone uses it. Technology is problematic when people cannot live their lives without using technology. Pokkecons, like the Coach app in "Hang the DJ" direct people's behavior. People are told how to behave and think without doing so independently. For instance, when the Pokkecon told the protagonist Tsuyoshi to buy the man a coffee, he may have done this on his own free will.

Connecting "Maneki" to "Hang the DJ"

In both stories, there is a lack of normal human interaction. In "Maneki" the hand shakes indicate the inability to connect in person. Handshakes are simple and universal. Everyone had a weird technique of hand shakes that did not involve physical contact. Also, the characters in the story idolize technology. Technology bridged the gap that humans lack in communication with others in a digitally dependent world. Freedom is achieved in both situations except it is Tsuyoshi's brother and agent Louise Hashimoto that escape like Frank and Amy. Frank and Amy in "Hang the DJ" threw away their devices and rebelled against the system. Tsuyoshi's brother and Louise left technology behind to be in a place that is free of anything tech. Tsuyoshi's continued grasp on his Pokkecon while he wanted for help symbolized his enslavement to technology.

Commentary on "Maneki"

MarzAat[41] praised Sterling's "Maneki" for its quirky humor and straightforwardness. Users of the Pokkecon are in a cycle of involuntary servitude once they accepted the gifts for hacking. The kickbacks and bribes for downloading and sharing information obtained from the internet resulted in a loss of one's privacy. People know about other people's likes, dislikes, allergies, favorite colors, foods, etc., because of hacking and the Pokkecon sharing the information. The true cost of freedom is dependent on the user. Freedom to the user may be to keep dependency on technology or leave technology behind.

@MarinChristina: Even though Tsuyoshi is enslaved by the technology, he seems genuinely happy where as the other two are distraught and have a hard time existing with others. The leaving to join a monastery and search for enlightenment however goes hand in hand with what the true search and goal is in Buddhism. They go to detach themselves from desire, as a way of fulfilling their ultimate desire and to finally find what it means to be and to be satisfied with just that, as they are not enslaved by the tech.Tprouty93 (talk) 01:23, 4 November 2019 (EST)

December 7, 2019- Journal 21: Wrapping Everything Up

Summary of Editing and Contributing to Wikipedia

I learned from the Wikipedia article I edited,"Bloodchild" a short story in Octavia Butler's Bloodchild and Other Stories, the different critical receptions over the title story. When I read the story for a class assignment I decided to purchase the book. My interpretation of the article is that "Bloodchild" is a story about love with anguish and indecision between a young boy and an otherworldly being that he loved with affection.

The technique I used to approach my critique of "Bloodchild" was to examine the psychology of the story. Other criticisms that were posted prior to mine negatively reviewed "Bloodchild" as a story that mirrored the enslavement of black women, rape, and impregnation. The reason I chose this article to critique was to add alternative criticisms that debunked the suggestion that Butler wrote about slavery. Readers should not mix horrible historic events as slavery and rape in comparison to a relationship between two beings who are affection with one another. A relationship between a master and a slave is not affectionate and the slave has no voice in choosing to not be physically violated.

One of the main themes in "Bloodchild" was the suggestion that Gan, his brother Qui, and their mom exhibited signs of continuous stress disorder. Continuous Stress Disorder (CSD) is a medical condition that is like Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Nightmares, depression, panic attacks, flashbacks, food insecurity, long-term oppression, and constant exposure to violence (birthing of T'lic eggs) are all symptoms of CSD expressed in "Bloodchild". The range of critical reviews can go farther than the incomparable psychological experience of an enslaved raped woman in comparison to earlier versions of the article.

My article did not receive any peer review or feedback. Wikipedia, in general comparison to other assignments in the past, was a bit challenging. I am not a technological person so coding and navigating through Wikipedia was difficult, but all was not impossible. Wikipedia is ideal for basic research because the articles are peer reviewed and unnecessary or irrelevant content is removed by administrators.


References

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  2. DocSpot [1]The Truth About Science Fiction (Documentary). YouTube. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
  3. Malzberg, Barry N. "The Number of the Beast", In Speculations on Speculation: Theories of Science Fiction. James Gunn and Matthew Candaleria (eds.), Lanham, Maryland, February 2005. Retrieved August 20, 2019.
  4. Roberts, Garyn G. Jules Verne, Herbert George Wells, Hugo Gernsback, and the Early Days of Modern Scientifiction. July 28, 2000. Web. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
  5. Cheever, John. "The Swimmer". The Story and Its Writer. 5thEd. Ann Charters, editor. Boston: MA, 1999. (p. 284).
  6. Cheever, John. "The Swimmer". (p. 284)
  7. Cheever, John. "The Swimmer". (p. 286)
  8. Kozikowski, Stanley J. 1993. “Damned in a Fair Life: Cheever’s ‘The Swimmer.’ (John Cheever).” Studies in Short Fiction, no. 3: 367. http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.mga.edu/login.aspx?direct=true&db=edsglr&AN=edsgcl.14334660&site=eds-live&scope=site.(p. 371).
  9. Croombs, Matthew. "La jetée in Historical Time: Torture, Visuality, Displacement. Cinema Journal. Volume 56, Number 2. (2017): 40.https://muse.jhu.edu/article/645449
  10. "La Jetée". Directed by Chris Marker. Paris: Argo Films, 1962. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aLfXCkFQtXw
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  12. Gibson, William. “The Gernsback Continuum.” Burning Chrome. NY: Ace, 1987. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22174275-the-gernsback-continuum (459)
  13. Gibson, William. “The Gernsback Continuum.” Burning Chrome. NY: Ace, 1987. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22174275-the-gernsback-continuum (460)
  14. Sterling, Bruce. “Preface.” Burning Chrome. NY: Ace, 1987. ix-xii. https://www.depauw.edu/sfs/backissues/66/bredehoft.html
  15. McGuirk, Carol. “The `New' Romancers: Science Fiction Innovators from Gernsback to Gibson.” Fiction 2000. Ed. George Slusser and Tom Shippey. https://www.depauw.edu/sfs/backissues/66/bredehoft.html
  16. Hollinger, Veronica. “Cybernetic Deconstructions: Cyberpunk and Postmodernism.” Storming the Reality Studio. Ed. Larry McCaffery. Durham, NC: Duke UP, 1991. 203-18. https://www.depauw.edu/sfs/backissues/66/bredehoft.html
  17. https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5njo9z
  18. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/time?utm_campaign=sd&utm_medium=serp&utm_source=jsonld
  19. Gibson, William. “The Gernsback Continuum.” Burning Chrome. NY: Ace, 1987. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22174275-the-gernsback-continuum (459, 464).
  20. Rushing, Robert A. 2010. “Blink: The Material Real in Cache, Mulholland Dr. and Doctor Who.” Post Script. http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.mga.edu/login.aspx?direct=true&db=edsglr&AN=edsgcl.258814575&site=eds-live&scope=site.
  21. Dick, Philip K. "We Can Remember it For You Wholesale", 36.
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  27. "You Know When You Suspect Something, It's Always Better When It Turns Out To Be True". "The Entire History of You" (S01E03) Black Mirror (2011). TV Series, Volume 14 (2018) https://journals.openedition.org/tvseries/3094.
  28. Butler, Octavia.Bloodchild: And Other Stories.New York: Integrated Media, 2012.
  29. Ryman, Geoff. "Adama and Mitochondrial Eve: A Foundation Myth for White Folks". Battlestar Galactia: Investigating Flesh, Spirit, and Steel. Edited by Roz Kaveney and Jennifer Stoy. NY: I.B. Tauris and CO LTD, 2010 https://web.a.ebscohost.com/ehost/ebookviewer/ebook?sid=07b70533-6272-444d-b309-5f31e4d1b475%40sdc-v-sessmgr01&ppid=pp_Cover&vid=0&format=EB
  30. Ryman, Geoff. "Adama and (Mitochondrial Eve: A Foundation Myth for White Folks".(40)
  31. Jowett, Lorna. "Frak Me: Reproduction, Gender, Sexuality". Battlestar Galactia: Investigating Flesh, Spirit, and Steel. Edited by Roz Kaveney and Jennifer Stoy. NY: I.B. Tauris and CO LTD, 2010 https://web.a.ebscohost.com/ehost/ebookviewer/ebook?sid=07b70533-6272-444d-b309-5f31e4d1b475%40sdc-v-sessmgr01&ppid=pp_Cover&vid=0&format=EB
  32. Jowett, Lorna. "Frak Me: Reproduction, Gender, Sexuality". (60)
  33. Sandberg, Anders. "The Cold Equation of Ethics". Practical Ethics: Ethics in the News. University of Oxford. March 4, 2014. Web. Accessed October 13, 2019. http://blog.practicalethics.ox.ac.uk/2014/03/the-cold-equations-of-ethics/
  34. Picard, Richard H. Stark Trek: A Psychoanalysis. New York: Agora Publishing, 2018. https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&AuthType=ip,shib&db=nlebk&AN=1851449&site=eds-live&scope=site.
  35. Pratt, Tim. Impossible Dreams. Tropism Press, 2006. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11703667-impossible-dreams
  36. Pratt, Tim. Impossible Dreams. Troprism Press, 2006. pg. 2
  37. Timpane, Sean F., and Julia McBee. 2017. “‘San Junipero,’ Black Mirror Season 3, Episode 4.” Journal of Palliative Medicine 20 (9): 1045. doi:10.1089/jpm.2017.0314.
  38. Tifton, Lois. Clarkesworld #61, October 2011 https://locusmag.com/2011/10/lois-tilton-reviews-short-fiction-early-october-2/
  39. "The Best Episode of 'Black Mirror' Season 4 Is a Hopeful Romance to Rival 'San Junipero'; After the Emmy-winning success of last season's 'San Junipero,' this year's standout episode 'Hang the DJ' proves 'Black Mirror' is best at its most optimistic. [Warning: Spoilers]." Daily Beast, December 29, 2017. Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints (accessed November 3, 2019). https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/A520673881/OVIC?u=maco12153&sid=OVIC&xid=b9bb278a.
  40. Sterling, Bruce. 1998. “Maneki Neko.” Fantasy & Science Fiction 94 (5): 4. https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&AuthType=ip,shib&db=fth&AN=437687&site=eds-live&scope=site.
  41. https://marzaat.wordpress.com/2017/03/09/a-good-old-fashioned-future/ Accessed November 3, 2019.

Further Reading

  • Croombs, Matthew. [3]. "La Jetée in Historical Time: Torture, Visuality, Displacement. Cinema Journal. Volume 56, Number 2. (2017): 40.
  • Picard, Richard H. [4].Stark Trek: A Psychoanalysis. New York: Agora Publishing, 2018.
  • Rushing, Robert A. [5]. Blink: The Material Real in Cache, Mulholland Dr. and Doctor Who. Post Script. 2010.
  • Ryman, Geoff. Edited by Roz Kaveney and Jennifer Stoy. [6]"Adama and Mitochondrial Eve: A Foundation Myth for White Folks". Battlestar Galactia: Investigating Flesh, Spirit, and Steel. NY: I.B. Tauris and CO LTD, 2010
  • Tifton, Lois.[7] Clarkesworld #61, October 2011.
  • Timpane, Sean F., and Julia McBee. “‘San Junipero,’ Black Mirror Season 3, Episode 4.” Journal of Palliative Medicine 20 (9): 1045. doi:10.1089/jpm.2017.0314. 2017.
  • Daily Beast, December 29, 2017. Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints (accessed November 3, 2019). "The Best Episode of 'Black Mirror' Season 4 Is a Hopeful Romance to Rival 'San Junipero'; After the Emmy-winning success of last season's 'San Junipero,' this year's standout episode 'Hang the DJ' proves 'Black Mirror' is best at its most optimistic. [Warning: Spoilers]." [8].