Revival of the Cyborg: Embodiment, Technology, and the Built Environment
First and second supervisors
Dr. Ben Campkin and Dr. Peg Rawes
This dissertation seeks to situate the current spatio-temporal condition of the modern-like cyborg-citizen within the built environment. Where theorists have addressed the role of the cyborg in science, politics, and performance, a fissure in the discourse is left to address the role of the cyborg within architecture. Through theories of performance, participation, embodiment, space, and technology, and innovative methodological solutions, the cyborg might find its home back in urban spaces with the aid of new dimensions in architecture and cyberspace.
From man’s dependency on technology, to the cyborg’s portrayal in sci-fi cinema; from gender differences, to notions of the abject, the cyborg has cunningly found its relevancy into this research and back into the twenty-first century. Theories on city-experience gave us the figures of the rambler and the flaneur; it is now time to update these passive figurations and re-introduce he who has never been closer to our lived realities than as he is today. The cyborg uses technology as habitual part of his daily life and as these technologies become pervasive, they increasingly become perceived unextraordinarily and accepted as the norm. However, these technologies play an important part in the way that humans relate to their environments and to each other; theorists and designers must begin to question how these technologies are helping or hindering the formation of subjects and identity within each user. Through digital devices, and echoing theories of affection, how do people make sense of themselves, their environments, and interpersonal relationships? Real-time data generation is not only amplifying the amount of information people are able to receive, stretching the constraints of space and time, but it is also changing the way people interact with each other and with spaces.
Regner Ramos holds a Masters in Architecture from the University of Puerto Rico, where he also received his undergraduate degree in Environmental Design and is well-known for his various lectures. Upon graduating, he created and directed a program to integrate design and architectural education to private school systems in Puerto Rico. He is now a PhD student researching relations between cyberspace, bodies, architecture, and technology, while also working as a writer for a successful, international magazine.