Artificial intelligence and synthetic humans: loss and replacement

  • Georgia Panteli


In most contemporary screen media examples of posthuman science fiction, the idea of replacing a human being with an artificial sentient human is linked with reactionary attitudes towards technological progress. Although contemporary literature and film have moved away from the portrayal of the evil sentient robot, artificial intelligence is still considered an uncomfortable topic. This chapter shows how the robot child in Spielberg’s A.I. Artificial Intelligence and the TV series Humans functions mainly in order to replace a dead child as a form of therapy for the parent, a narrative that reflects technophobic ideologies that oppose transhumanist values. It also demonstrates how such tendencies resemble similar reactions to early photography, particularly since photographs of dead children appear frequently in these films.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Georgia Panteli
    • 1
  1. 1.University College LondonLondonUK

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