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Themesicon: navigation pathCyborg Bodiesicon: navigation pathCollective Bodies

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players seek to validate the mask or role they played in life, that is, to «preserve a public personage.» (30) «Infinite players offer their death as a way of continuing play. For that reason they do not play for their own life; they live for their own play. But since that play is always with others, it is evident that infinite players both live and die for the continuing life of others.» There are many other issues the film raises that cannot be discussed here—the implicit critique of gaming, of death by media, and of Japanese denial of this part of their history—nor can comparisons be drawn with Marker’s «Sans Soleil,» Alain Resnais’ «Hiroshima mon Amour» and even more appropriately, Resnais’ documentary «Nuit et Brouillard.» However, just as in the latter film, the relation between individual and collective fate is not shown as an opposition, nor is personal grief incommensurable with great tragedy. Rather, individual death may be measured not merely in terms of winning and losing but as a force in the continuity of life. The meeting between Laura and the dead lover/computer was a limited affiliation that affirms the infinite game.


III. Collective Affinities: Cyborgs in Art and Everyday Life

In the introduction, I suggested that technological and new media art forms can be ‹writing,› an embodied discourse that nominates cyborgs and remaps the world. However, these same technologies are also part of the «technics of domination» that art seeks to challenge. It is the dilemma of technological art that it must address and enjoy a critical relation to its own means of production. Certainly, the relation between individuality and collectivity is one of areas in which art discourse offers wide ranging «cultural work» of more complexity than dualistic thought or «sides» in relation to, for instance, specific technologies or struggles around the WTO, global mega-corporations and the public interest, intellectual property versus the commons, open source versus vertical integration and more. Art also addresses and contests other media and technologies that serve the connection and control of large entities and numbers of people (or what Foucault called «biopolitics», [21] albeit in a less intelligible than tangible way. Lev Manovich’s notion of «database» art [22] has been one recent attempt to link

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