PJAS 15 Spring-6

Piotr Płomiński
Negotiating Subjectivity within Simulation: The Posthuman in Philip K. Dick’s Ubik
Polish Journal for American Studies, vol. 15 (Spring 2021), pp. 89-104

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to offer a reading of P. K. Dick’s Ubik which investigates the possibility for a representation of posthuman subjectivity in the novel. The forming of a sustainable posthuman subjectivity occurs in the novel against the backdrop of what might be described in Baudrillardian terms as hyperreality. The use of Baudrillard?s idea of hyperreality may not only guide the analysis towards uncovering the circumstances facilitating the emergence of posthuman subjects in Ubik, but also reveal an illustration of the dialogue between the postmodern and the posthuman positions. Ultimately, I contend that Dick’s novel depicts the emergence of posthuman modes of subjectivity in a process which is facilitated by the context of hyperreality. This unexpected coincidence occurs through a positive, constructive interaction with the environment, bestowing, through symbolic exchange, sustainability to the inhabitants of unstable reality.

Keywords: Philip K. Dick, Ubik, posthumanism, hyperreality, subjectivity

DOI: 10.7311/PJAS.15/1/2021.06

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