CNR 2014: Lectures: Lucy Burns (USA): iRobot: Human-Robot Sociality in Asian American Theater
iRobot: Human-Robot Sociality in Asian American
My presentation focuses on Asian American discourses of futurity and Asian American racialization in relation to mechanical and digital technology. How is the future imagined in the creative work of Asian Americans? I locate this question in Asian American theater and theater about Asians and robots. In analyzing the figure of the robot as a staging of temporality in Asian American theater, I am interested in the "form and function that the future takes" in dramatizations of human-robot sociality.
The play texts and full productions of theater works I look at include Nic Cha's Trapezoid, Qui Nguyen's Fight Girl Battle World, Gigi Otalvaro-Hormillosa's Cosmic Blood, Rolind Jones's The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow. In these plays and performances, "human Asian/Americans" next to actors-as-Asian/American robots: raises questions of proximity. To put in question form: Where does the body of the performer end and the robot character begin? This presentation highlights the question of "national" and "racial" identities in robot narratives. These performances begin the necessary work of grappling with the increasing and inevitability of human-machine merger.
[image source: La Jolla Playhouse, Jenny Chow]
[source: Vive Les Robots!]
Lucy Burns is a professor in the Asian American Studies Department at the University of California Los Angeles.
iRobot: Human-Robot Sociality in Asian
Lucy Burns will present her lecture "iRobot: Human-Robot Sociality in Asian American Theater" at Cafe Neu Romance on the 28 November 2014 at IIM.
IIM (Institute of
Hall H25 at FEL CVUT
160 00 Prague.
Note for the visitors of IIM: Go first to the info-desk at Galerie NTK, Technická 6, to get an entrance badge.