Posthuman Sexuality: From Ahumanity to Cosmogenic Desire

  • Patricia MacCormack

While feminism has grappled with the disassembling of the majoritarian phallologocentric subject, posthuman and transhuman theory have shown a problematic acceleration of certain tropes associated with historically dominant subjects, rather than offer material and ethical alternatives, using fetishisation and assimilation of alterity to further their phantasies of immortality rather than authentically challenge configurations of life. However there are ways in which an ethics of posthuman sexuality coming from a feminist history can be both accountable and avoid the perils of superficial posthumanism via certain instances of desire. This chapter will explore the trajectory of posthuman desire implemented through Continental Philosophy and end with a variety of configurations of desire beyond humanism, but also beyond the phallologically driven biotech fetishism of some posthumanism. The posthuman shows we can no longer be trustworthy of studies of the human, of humanism or even of the...


  1. Benhabib, Seyla. 1992. Situating the self: Gender, community and postmodernism in contemporary ethics. New York: RoutledgeGoogle Scholar
  2. Braidotti, Rosi. 1994. Nomadic subjects: embodiment and sexual difference in contemporary feminist theory. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Braidotti, Rosi. 2013. The posthuman. Cambridge and Malden, MA: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  4. Deleuze, Gilles, and Félix Guattari. 1987. A thousand plateaus: Capitalism and schizophrenia. Trans. Brian Massumi. London: The Althone Press.Google Scholar
  5. Foucault, Michel. 1994. For an ethics of discomfort. Trans. Robert Hurley. In Power, ed. Michel Foucault. London: Penguin.Google Scholar
  6. Foucault, Michel. 2000. Bodies and pleasure. Trans. James A. Steintrager. In More and less, ed. Lotringer Sylvère. New York: Semiotext(e).Google Scholar
  7. Grosz, Elizabeth. 1994. Volatile bodies: Toward a corporeal feminism. Sydney: Allen and Unwin.Google Scholar
  8. Guattari, Fèlix. 1996. Soft subversions. Trans. David L. Sweet, and Chet Wiener. New York: Semiotext(e).Google Scholar
  9. Guattari, Fèlix. 2011. The machinic unconscious. Trans. Taylor Adkins. New York: Semiotext(e).Google Scholar
  10. Haraway, Donna. 1990. Simians, cyborgs and women: The reinvention of nature. London: Free Association Press.Google Scholar
  11. Irigaray, Luce. 1992. Elemental passions. Trans. Joanne Collie, and Judith Still. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  12. Irigaray, Luce. 1993. An ethics of sexual difference. Trans. Carolyn Burke, and Gillian C. Gill. New York: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  13. Kristeva, Julia. 1984. Revolution in poetic language. Trans. M. Waller. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  14. MacCormack, Patricia. 2009. Feminist becomings: Hybrid feminism and haecceitic (Re)production. Australian Feminist Studies 24(59):85–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. MacCormack, Patricia. 2014. Introduction. In The animal catalyst: Toward ahuman theory, ed. Patricia MacCormack, 1–12. London: Bloomsbury.Google Scholar
  16. Pepperell, Robert. 1997. The posthuman condition. Exeter: Intellect.Google Scholar
  17. Serres, Michel. 1995. Genesis. Trans. Genevieve James, and James Nielson. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  18. Wittig, Monique. 1992. The straight mind and other essays. Boston, MA: Beacon Press.Google Scholar
  19. Wolfe, Cary. 2009. What is posthumanism? Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Professor of Continental Philosophy, Anglia Ruskin UniversityCambridge UKEngland

Personalised recommendations