‘Synthetik Love Lasts Forever’: Sex Dolls and the (Post?)human Condition

Prayag Ray

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

    2 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The sex doll—an artificial representation of the human body for sexual usage—has a long and somewhat secret history. After briefly recounting this history, this paper examines the realistic modern sex doll and the motivations of its users. The doll embodies the complex interplay of the human desires for the fantastic as well as the realistic. It then looks at the sex doll as a product of commodity fetishism, the fear of female sexuality, and the fragmentation of human relationships within the socio-economic reality of late capitalism. It then reads the sex doll as what Baudrillard would call a ‘mythological’ object, reproducing and thereby perpetuating the ideology it is a product of, at the semiotic level. Later sections will outline a genealogy of the taboo surrounding sex dolls, from a historical and psychological perspective, examining the ‘uncanny’ affect it produces. A final section will consider the phenomenon in the light of posthumanism, asking whether its use is ‘cyborgic’, and whether it heralds a post- or transhumanist future.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationCritical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures
    EditorsMakarand Paranjape, Debashish Banerjee
    Place of PublicationNew Delhi
    PublisherSpringer
    Pages91-112
    ISBN (Print)9788132236351 8132236351
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Fingerprint

    Doll
    Human Condition
    Posthumanism
    Economics
    Human Body
    Psychological
    Secret History
    Taboo
    Commodity Fetishism
    Sexual
    Ideology
    Genealogy
    Artificial
    Jean Baudrillard
    Human Desire
    History
    Fragmentation
    Capitalism
    Female Sexuality
    Human Relationships

    Keywords

    • post-humanism
    • transhumanism
    • sexuality

    Cite this

    Ray, P. (2016). ‘Synthetik Love Lasts Forever’: Sex Dolls and the (Post?)human Condition. In M. Paranjape, & D. Banerjee (Eds.), Critical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures (pp. 91-112). New Delhi: Springer.
    Ray, Prayag. / ‘Synthetik Love Lasts Forever’ : Sex Dolls and the (Post?)human Condition. Critical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures. editor / Makarand Paranjape ; Debashish Banerjee. New Delhi : Springer, 2016. pp. 91-112
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    abstract = "The sex doll—an artificial representation of the human body for sexual usage—has a long and somewhat secret history. After briefly recounting this history, this paper examines the realistic modern sex doll and the motivations of its users. The doll embodies the complex interplay of the human desires for the fantastic as well as the realistic. It then looks at the sex doll as a product of commodity fetishism, the fear of female sexuality, and the fragmentation of human relationships within the socio-economic reality of late capitalism. It then reads the sex doll as what Baudrillard would call a ‘mythological’ object, reproducing and thereby perpetuating the ideology it is a product of, at the semiotic level. Later sections will outline a genealogy of the taboo surrounding sex dolls, from a historical and psychological perspective, examining the ‘uncanny’ affect it produces. A final section will consider the phenomenon in the light of posthumanism, asking whether its use is ‘cyborgic’, and whether it heralds a post- or transhumanist future.",
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    Ray, P 2016, ‘Synthetik Love Lasts Forever’: Sex Dolls and the (Post?)human Condition. in M Paranjape & D Banerjee (eds), Critical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures. Springer, New Delhi, pp. 91-112.

    ‘Synthetik Love Lasts Forever’ : Sex Dolls and the (Post?)human Condition. / Ray, Prayag.

    Critical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures. ed. / Makarand Paranjape; Debashish Banerjee. New Delhi : Springer, 2016. p. 91-112.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

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    Ray P. ‘Synthetik Love Lasts Forever’: Sex Dolls and the (Post?)human Condition. In Paranjape M, Banerjee D, editors, Critical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures. New Delhi: Springer. 2016. p. 91-112