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A million little differences : polysemy, performativity and posthumanism in Invasion of the Body Snatchers
chapterposted on 2017-12-06, 00:00 authored by Stephen ButlerStephen Butler
Science fiction classic Invasion of the Bodysnatchers (1956) is conventionally read as a humanist political allegory about the Cold War. Recent critics have used it as a pretext to discuss issues such as posthumanism and postmodernism. The ongoing popular interest in the film, the proliferating versions of the story, and scholarly contestations about its significance indicate that there is little about the film that is singular. The film exemplifies a hidden aspect of the old saying ‘the more things change the more they stay the same’- the towns people of Santa Mira are “always already” not themselves, they just don’t know it. Difference and ambiguity permeate the film and the motif of the ‘doublesome’ pods is replicated on a number of levels : production, consumption, generic structures and screenplay. Reading the film in terms of poststructuralist concepts such as performativity, the paper suggests that Invasion of the BodySnatchers is an early posthumanist text and has much to offer as a site for exploring issues associated with cinema, subjectivity,the nature of the real and what it means to be human in the contemporary world.
Category 1 - Australian Competitive Grants (this includes ARC, NHMRC)
EditorWalker-Gibbs BM; Knight BA
Parent TitleRe-visioning research and knowledge for the 21st century
Number of Pages19
Place of PublicationTeneriffe, Qld.
External Author AffiliationsFaculty of Arts, Humanities and Education;