Since Freud, psychoanalysis has always concerned itself with questions of art, creativity, politics, and war. This collection of essays from leading writers on psychoanalysis explores questions of culture through a close dialogue between psychoanalytic clinical and academic traditions. Culture and the Unconscious is a major contribution to these debates. With accessible introductions to its central themes, the book opens up conversations between the spheres of art, academia and psychoanalysis, revealing points of commonality and divergence.
The rapid fertility decline in most advanced industrial nations, coupled with secularization and the disintegration of the family, is a sign that Western Civilization is beginning to collapse, even while radical religious movements pose challenges to Western dominance. Under such dire circumstances, it is pointless to be cautious about developing new Converging Technologies. Historical events are undermining the entire basis of ethical decision-making, so it is necessary to seek a new basis for ethics in the intellectual unification of science and (...) the power to do good inherent in the related technological convergence. This article considers the uneasy relations between science and religion, in the context of fertility decline, and the prospects for developing a new and self-sustaining civilization based in a broad convergence of science and technology, coalescing around a core of nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology, and cognitive technologies. It concludes with the suggestion that the new civilization should become interstellar. (shrink)
A bewildering array of sciences, theories, and methodologies offer researchers many difficult choices when studying emotion or designing affective technologies. Thus, clarity of focus is a prime virtue of good work, as illustrated in the Aylett and Paiva (2012) article. The social sciences remain fundamentally undecided about how to conceptualize human variations, including how to measure culture and personality, and even about whether these two commonly used words have real meaning. This disagreement is pronounced in human-centered computing, because cognitive and (...) rational-choice perspectives are technically easiest to apply, and these make little room for culture and personality. The article employs a modular approach, which can inspire researchers following alternative conceptualizations to substitute their own preferred choices. (shrink)
This paper maps superheroes as signifiers of substantive justice and their relationship with the state across two Coverian nomoi, World War II and the “war on terror”. It is argued that the central concern of most superhero narratives is justice, exploring both what it means and how it can best be articulated. This “call to do justice” becomes even more important during wartime where superheroes become agitators for cultural change, appropriating the sovereign decision during states of exception even as they (...) resist co-option by the state itself. (shrink)
We respond to two themes in the comments by Bainbridge, Gratch, and Nishida: first, the importance of embodiment, and second the issue of what should be explicitly modelled as against what should be dynamically generated. Finally, we briefly respond to the ethical questions raised by Bainbridge.
The nature of the contributions to astronomy of Caroline Lucretia Herschel are explored in this article. Her accomplishments included new observational discoveries and the skilled and accurate transcription and reduction of astronomical data. Although she made important additions to the sum total of astronomical facts available to the scientist, she herself showed little interest or ability in applying these data to explain phenomena. Love of her brother, Sir William Herschel, motivated her achievements in astronomy. Barred from the ranks of (...) creative astronomers by both her inability and her disinterest in abstract concepts, she substituted other qualities such as accuracy and perseverance which assured her a place in the history of astronomy. (shrink)
Caroline of Ansbach, wife of George II, occupied a crucial position in the public life of early 18th-century Britain. She was seen to exert considerable influence on the politics of the court and, as mother to the Hanoverian dynasty's next generation, she became an important emblem for the nation's political well-being. This paper examines how such emblematic significance was challenged and qualified when Caroline's body could no longer be portrayed as healthy and life giving. Using private memoirs and (...) correspondence from the time of her death in 1737, the paper explores the metaphorical potential of the queen's strangulated hernia, as well as the particular problems it posed for the public image of her dynasty. Through these investigations, the paper will comment upon the haphazard nature of public discussion in the early 18th century, and reveal the complex relationship between political speculation and medical diagnosis. (shrink)
New branches of social science primarily engaging the “internet revolution” are appearing alongside mainstream research and journals such as Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking are providing social scientists with an outlet of peer-reviewed research. HPS scholars will find new methodologies and the relation of technology to social science of particularly interest. Social scientists are becoming increasingly interested in virtual realities (see Milburn (Spontaneous Generations 2008, 63)) and are declaring time spent “in-game” ethnographic research. William Sims Bainbridge boasts 2300+ hours (...) (approximately 96 days) of ethnographic research into a virtual world he calls “The Warcraft Civilization.” Blizzard Entertainment reported in a December 2008 press release that World of Warcraft (WoW), its extraordinarily successful 2004 massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) comprised 11.5 million subscribers worldwide . In order to accommodate player demand, Blizzard uses hundreds of servers, artfully called realms, each running an instance of WoW for subscribers to play on. There are four types of realms: normal or player-versus-environment (PvE) realms, player-versus-player (PvP) realms, role-playing (RP) realms, and role-playing player-versus-player (RP-PvP) realms. The most popular realms are PvE and PvP; players on RP and RP-PvP realms are meant to “live” in WoW and therefore must adhere to role-playing policies such as remaining “in-character” of the avatar they have selected. (shrink)