Jun 23, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

ENG 296 - Science Fiction & Technology

Campbelll, S; Sample

In 2018, the Pew Research Center surveyed over 1,000 experts about their perspectives on how living in a technology-saturated world might impact human physical and mental well-being. The results were mixed, with 47% predicting more help than harm, 32% predicting more harm than help, and 21% seeing little change.  In other words, there’s little agreement:  are we in/entering a cyberutopia, in which the internet favors the oppressed over the oppressor or instead headed toward a cyberdystopia, in which individuals lose control, lose privacy, become datafied? 

Despite its limitations, science fiction allows us to explore and reflect richly on how living, loving, and working-being-in a digital world shapes existence as individuals or in communities.  Given widespread current concern about digital inequalities and isolation, we should ask how equality and justice are and may be defined in digital communities.  ENG 296: Science Fiction and Technology will engage these issues through exploring relevant films, novels, and short stories, focusing on themes including

• Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and persuasion architecture

• Big data, datafication, and discrimination

• Digital inequalities and intersectionalities

• The surveillance state

Satisfies English major and minor requirement
Satisfies Digital and Screen Media interdisciplinary mjaor requirement
Satisfies Digital Studies interdisciplinary minor requirement
Satsifies Literary Studies, Creative Writing, and Rhetoric requirement
Satisfies Justice, Equality and Community requirement