Quiet Refusals: Androids as Others in Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Nima Behroozi Moghadam, Farideh Porugiv


This study intends to show how science fiction literature in general and Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? in particular can be read as a symptom of the postmodern era we live in. Taking as the main clues the ideas of the cultural theorist Slavoj Žižek, who combines Marxism with the psychoanalysis of Jacques Lacan, as well as his account of “postmodernism,” the study discusses how, contrary to what capitalism dubs a “post-ideological” era, we are more than ever dominated by ideology through its cynical function. It further examines (through such Lacanian concepts as fantasy, desire, objet petit a, and jouissance) the way late capitalistic ideology functions in Dick’s narrative, and discusses how the multiculturalist society prompts new forms of racism through abstract universalization which only accounts for and tolerates the other as long as they appear within the confines of that formal abstraction. Finally, it looks into how ideologies as such can be subverted from the Real point within the symbolic.


Science Fiction, Postmodernism, Ideology, Racism, The Real

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7575/aiac.alls.v.9n.3p.10


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