From Babylon 5000 a. d. to 2015 human beings have dreamt about the merging of technology and living bodies. Thus, the cyborg has been a faultline for and an embodiment of wildest imagination throughout history. In our talk we present different historical and contemporary cyborg figures to show that cyborgs and their opponents manifest themselves ever new throughout history. We present these different cyborgs in form of a “Quartett“ or “happy family” where always two cyborgs duel with each other according to one parameter (parameters such as sustainability, scale, transhumanist potential, animality, etc.) While Da Vinci's Lion for instance, has a high sustainability value, Robocop beats the techno-animal in bodily integration.The presentation will feature as diverse characters as the Jewish Golem, the Chimera or Neil Harbisson. We talk about Dick Cheney’s encrypted heart, synthetic biology and cyborgian sexualities.
Eventually, our presentation aims to question contemporary body images and human self-references. We are convinced that cyborgism can undermine seemingly stable categories, such as human-machine, but also human-animal and human-environment relations. In a playful way we want to present forms of cyborgism that go beyond a capitalist self-enhancement phantasies. The merging of technology and body does not have to follow the logic of entrepreneurial performance and valuation. To the opposite it can offer a space for play, imagination and sweet subversion.