Battlestar Galactica and Philosophy

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"A collection of essays exploring philosophical, political, and cultural themes of the television show Battlestar Galactica"--Provided by publisher.
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Battlestar Galactica and Philosophy: Mission Accomplished or Mission Frakked Up?

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"A collection of essays exploring philosophical, political, and cultural themes of the television show Battlestar Galactica"--Provided by publisher.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780812696431
  • Publisher: Open Court Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 5/28/2008
  • Series: Popular Culture and Philosophy
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 965,240
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword David Weddle Weddle, David

"I Dare You to Watch This Show!"

Model 1 Some Are Programmed to Think They Are Human 1

1 The Narrative Disruptions of Model Eight Daniel Milsky Milsky, Daniel 3

2 Frak-tured Postmodern Lives, Or, How I Found Out I Was a Cylon Paul Booth Booth, Paul 17

3 The Avatar and the Ego: Reconciling Ourselves with Videogames Luke Cuddy Cuddy, Luke 29

4 Gothic Anxiety 39

5 Am I a Cylon? Self-Knowledge at the Crossroads 49

Model 2 They Look Like Us Now 61

6 Kiss Me, Now Die! Magali Rennes Rennes, Magali 63

7 I Frak, Therefore I Am Jennifer Harwood-Smith Harwood-Smith, Jennifer 77

8 The C-Word: Queering the Cylons Shira Chess Chess, Shira 87

9 I, Cyborg Shana Heinricy Heinricy, Shana 95

10 I Am a Cylon Richard Hanley Hanley, Richard 103

Model 3 We Became What We Beheld 115

11 You Can't Rape a Machine Amy Kind Kind, Amy 117

12 Knowing We're Frakked: Democracy and Bad Decisions Tristan D. Tamplin Tamplin, Tristan D. 129

13 The Razor's Edge: Galactica, Pegasus, and Lakoff Sara Livingston Livingston, Sara 143

14 Some Cylons Are More Equal than Others Hal Shipman Shipman, Hal 155

15 They Evolved, but Do They Deserve Consideration? John Scott Gray Gray, John Scott 163

Model 4 Battlestar Iraqtica 171

16 Playing with Fire Without Getting Burned: Blowback Re-imagined Isabel Pinedo Pinedo, Isabel 173

17 The Wretched of New Caprica Dan Dinello Dinello, Dan 185

18 Choosing Sides: Occupation or Resistance? Ian M. Peters Peters, Ian M. 201

19 Secrets and Lies: Balancing Security and Democracy in the Colonial Fleet Louis Melancon Melancon, Louis 211

20 Weapons of Mass Salvation Bryan McHenry McHenry,Bryan 221

21 SALTed Popcorn: The Original Battlestar Galactica in Historical Context John Kenneth Muir Muir, John Kenneth 233

Model 5 Finding Purpose in the Void 247

22 33, 34, 35 ... The Life of the Limits Jean-Paul Martinon Martinon, Jean-Paul 249

23 Lost in Space? Finding Your Way Without a Map Trudy Milburn Milburn, Trudy 261

24 Free Will, Determinism, and Schopenhauer (Oh, My!) Bryan C. Barker Barker, Bryan C. 271

25 Living in the Watchtower Christopher Christian Christian, Christopher 281

26 The Meaning of a Deathless Life David Vessey Vessey, David 289

Model 6 Near the End of OurJourney 301

27 Why Your Mormon Neighbor Knows More about This Show than You Do Ivan Wolfe Wolfe, Ivan 303

28 GINO or Dialogic: What Does "Re-imagined" Really Mean? Richard Berger Berger, Richard 317

29 The Real War between Battlestar Galacticas 329

30 A Dangerous Place for Women Ewan Kirkland Kirkland, Ewan 337

31 Eve, Lilith, and the Cylon Connection Heather Rolufs Rolufs, Heather 349

32 Dreamers in the Night 359

33 Coduction: Cylons, Colonials and Criticism 369

Dossier 379

Callsigns 381

Decodings 387

Lexicon 393

Intel 397

Other Campaigns 405

War Journal 409

The Universe is a vast and complex system: coincidental, serendipitous events are bound to occur ... 413

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 14, 2009

    Entertaining Method for Introducing Readers to Philosophical Concepts

    While popular culture studies might err on the one hand through a facetious, superficial treatment of its subject or on the other hand, wallow in overly-serious pedantries, it is possible for intelligent, thought-provoking discussions of material which exists beyond the realm of conventional Academia. The Open Court essay collection, Battlestar Galactica and Philosophy: Mission Accomplished or Mission Frakked Up? uses the television series for its foundation to afford readers a painless introduction to sophisticated concepts well beyond the realm of Philosophy 101 courses. Most of the essays presented here reflect upon the new, re-imagined series but a few discuss the original 1978 series. Specific episodes are cited in some of the discussions. To appreciate the essays to the fullest extent, readers probably should be familiar with both the original and re-imagined series, although if they have seen only the latter show, they will still be able to follow the arguments presented.

    Schools of thought ranging from Freudianism to Queer Theory are employed in these discourses to address a broad range of topics. With an emphasis on the timeliness of the material presented in the television episodes, these essays include discussions on the nature of democratic government and the correlated issue of transparent versus secretive modes of governing, the ethics of violent resistance to colonialism and the treatment of non-human beings. Readers of the political absolutist persuasion will find a few items reflecting their worldview while most of the authors exhibit a more progressivist intention in their discussions. But throughout the collection, the authors consistently write with a respectful tone. The essays not only show consideration for readers' intelligence and belief-systems, but they are also free from the condescension often exhibited towards anything related to science fiction or its aficionados.

    Overall, Battlestar Galactica and Philosophy is an enjoyable experience that provides a good workout for readers' intellects. For readers who wish to delve more deeply into the ideas presented in these essays, a solid bibliography is provided. I was less than enthusiastic about the editorial decision to leave authorship of certain essays unspecified. Instead of providing the authors' names, a set of empty brackets follows the title on some essays. This was done to reflect the mystery in the re-imagined series surrounding the identities of the Final Five Cylons. Rather than play guessing games, I would just as soon have been provided with the authors' names. One other complaint I have with this essay collection is the regrettably high number of typographical errors scattered throughout its 300+ pages. Granted, I am offended when I see even one error in a publication, but I do feel that more than 20 errors is a sign that the publishers' editorial and proofreading staff should have been more conscientious in their efforts to prepare the book for publication. But on the whole, I recommend Battlestar Galactica and Philosophy: Mission Accomplished or Mission Frakked Up? as an entertaining means of discovering a variety of concepts in the field of philosophy.

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