LIT 400: Reading Cyberliterature

Cyberpunk and its Cultural Contexts I

The Assignment

Working in pairs answer the following questions:

1.  Either on your own or through online research, come up with a working definition of "cyberpunk."  Here's a possible place to start:  Exploring Dystopia: Cyberpunk

2. Do research in your NMR or online to fill in the cultural contexts for today's stories in Burning Chrome.  Here are some possible contexts, followed by some suggested links between contexts and some specific stories:

"The Winter Market"


Martine Irvine's "Cyborgs-R-Us"

Weiner, "Men, Machines, and the World About" (NMR 65)

Licklider, "Man-Computer Symbiosis" (NMR 73)

Martine Irvine's "Cyborgology 101"

"Gomi" at Beyond Cyberpunk: Glossary (scroll down for gomi)

The Cyborg, Military, and War


"Johnny Mnemonic"


3.  Focusing on one story, explain the significance of the connection between the text and context(s).  For example, you might consider how one of Gibson's stories is a response (skeptical in nature?) to the cultural context(s).  Post your answer to the discussion board forum established for the purpose (don't forget to list both of you as contributors).