‘Robot’ is a machine that makes the functions of a man
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Surrogate Humanity is the brainchild of Professor Neda Atanasoski, UCSC, and Professor Kalindi Vora, UC Davis. The authors work within the fields of Feminist Studies and Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, and Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies, respectively. In the book, they take a critical look into how contemporary robots, AI, cooperative and other technologies are interwoven with cultural views on race, gender, labour and social structures in general.
Since the First Industrial Revolution, centred on the introduction of mechanical labour and the steam engine, our view of the relationship between human beings and machines (and technology in general) has relied on two main narratives, the dystopian and the utopian. That is, machines have either been viewed as fundamentally evil, invoking general anxiety about the incumbent demise of humanity, as machines take over our jobs, our identities and—in the end—our lives. Or they are presented as the solutions to human hardship,...