Stereotypes Among the Stars

Western science fiction often presents fantastical ideas of the future, with robots and spaceships and groups of people living and working together in harmony. Yet for all of the ideas of progress, SF relies heavily on the current values, ideas, and stereotypes of the time period, often marginalizing, ignoring and stereotyping other races, presenting anyone... Continue Reading →

Season’s End: Riverdale

After an uneven first few episodes, Riverdale offers an entertaining and chilling season conclusion. I didn't actually think I would be that interested in Riverdale, a mature CW adaptation of the popular Archie comics I read as a child. I never really watched shows that featured twenty-something-year-olds trying to pass off as high school students while navigating the complicated... Continue Reading →

Genes and Time Travel

Imagine scientists can turn your genetic clock back in time to cure diseases like Parkinson’s and Huntington’s. This seems like an idea straight from the Twilight Zone, but as I discussed earlier with the CRISPR Cas9, the technology to do so actually exists, and is accelerating every day. We know this technology as the controversial... Continue Reading →

GATTACA and Genetically Enhanced Humans: Fact or Fiction?

Published on Front Line Genomics: http://www.frontlinegenomics.com/blog/11167/gattaca-genetically-enhanced-humans-fact-fiction/ The ability to alter a human genome to influence eye color, height and strength was a major plot point in the 1997 science fiction film, Gattaca. The movie stars Ethan Hawke as Vincent Freeman, a young man who is considered genetically inferior because of his natural birth, and is thus... Continue Reading →

When Non-Political TV Shows Tackle Politics

This evening I was catching up on one of my favorite television shows, Arrow, and just finished an episode which dealt with the aftermath of a mass shooting and touchy subject of gun control. Arrow, which is currently in its fifth season, is a modern take on DC's Green Arrow, and tells the story of a rich playboy, Oliver Queen, who, after five years of being stranded on an island, returns home to Star City to fight crime with a bow and arrows.

“Mad Men” and the Male Gaze

The “Jaguar Pitch”, scene that appears in a season 5 episode of Mad Men, is a perfect example of Laura Mulvey’s concept of the “male gaze”, a masculine point of view across movies and literature in which women are presented as the objects of male pleasure. Mulvey states that the female characters have no direct... Continue Reading →

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