How is cyberpunk’s central tension around questions of the body reflected in Neuromancer? Make a critical argument, using evidence from the text, that addresses the embodiment of two specific characters, in each case arguing for why the embodiment of that character is of particular critical interest.
How is narrative exposition handled in Neuromancer? Present at least three quotations showing exposition and provide analysis that connects them to a critical argument about how the book delivers background information to the reader.
Make a critical argument about the representation of one of the following themes in Neuromancer. Your argument should include evidence and analysis, and argue for a specific critical reading of how the book explores this theme. Note: You must tie your discussion to how the theme is explored in this particular text. You can discuss other relevant texts in relation to this theme if you wish but keep it brief.
Mind, Body and Identity – what does it mean to be a person?
High Technology / Low Society – how has technological change affected people of different social groups? How does tech contribute to alienation and marginalization, or to liberation?
Utopia and Dystopia – what might perfect worlds or perfectly awful worlds look like? How are they constructed?
The Nature of Heroism – what makes a character a hero, or not?
Language and Memory – why is memory important? What is language’s role in memory?
Once you have read over these essay questions, choose whichever one you feel offers the most interesting possibilities for argument.
Write a short thesis statement that outlines a critical argument that you will make in response to one of these questions.
You are not bound to use this thesis statement for your first class essay (though you can if you wish), but the process of devising a strong thesis statement will help prepare you to write a better essay.
A thesis statement should be no longer than a sentence, or two at most. It should indicate the main terms that will be used in the argument, and it should at least gesture toward what you think is at stake in such an argument, i.e., why it matters.
This assignment is worth 2% of your final grade for the course.
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