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Winner of the University of California (Riverside) 2017 Science Fiction and Technoculture Studies Program Book Award


What is consciousness? What is it like to feel pain, or to see the colour red? Do robots and computers really think? For that matter, do plants and amoebas think? If we ever meet intelligent aliens, will we be able to understand what they say to us? Philosophers and scientists are still unable to answer questions like these. Perhaps science fiction can help.


In Discognition, Steven Shaviro looks at science fiction novels and stories that explore the extreme possibilities of human and alien sentience.

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"Shaviro’s text... forces us to think about science in a new way in which we no longer simply discuss whether or not science is ‘right,’ trying to prove or disprove it, but instead ensures that we think about the ideological effects and consequences of each scientific argument."

Alfie Brown, Review31