TURNING TO THE SAMPLE
READING provided on the
try applying some of the concepts you've learned so far. Let's consider
the popular television show, Star Trek: The Next Generation as well
as the other shows in this franchise's rich diegesis.
Given the show's efforts to represent our own present by way of allegory,
are there certain elements of the show that might be dealing with aspects
of the postmodern condition, as discussed in the Postmodernism Modules?
In particular, you might consider the use of technology, visuality,
the holodeck, the Borg, and Data in the Star Trek universe. For an interesting
clip from the show, click
here (5.4MB mpeg file, with a 1 min., 30 sec. download time on DSL.
Different browsers will handle the file in different ways; if you are
taken to a different page, you can return to this page by hitting the
back button on your browser; if the play-back is jumpy, allow the entire
file to download to your browser window before playing the clip.)
Some of the questions you might consider when analyzing a work by way
of postmodern theory include the following:
Is there a way in which reality is being supplanted by its representation
(á là the simulacrum)?
What is the status of the "human" as a category in the
work? Are there ways in which the traditional notion of subjectivity
is being questioned or reworked?
What is the place of the machine in this universe; has the machinic
begun to threaten aspects of traditional human society?
In what ways has digital or media culture begun to affect such
categories as subjectivity, perception, or representation?
Does the work play with temporal categories (eg. history, retro
fashion, pastiche, future antérieur)? Have spatial parameters
or the temporal nature of visuality supplanted temporality in significant
Is the work commenting in any way on multinational or late capitalism?
In what ways does the work decenter, disperse, subvert, or parody
forms of hierarchical organization?
Does the work disorient the reader/viewer in ways that are evocative
of postmodern architecture or hyperspace?
Proper Citation of this Page:
Felluga, Dino. "Applications
of Postmodernism: Star Trek: Questions." Introductory Guide
to Critical Theory.[date of last update, which you can find on the
page]. Purdue U. [date you accessed the site]. <http://www.purdue.edu/guidetotheory/postmodernism/applications/postmodapplicTnStarTrek1.html>.