Philip K. Dick’s Androids dream of electric sheep? it is a complex novel that could be considered postmodernist. To varying degrees, it raises the question of gender, the structure of which inevitably exerts considerable influence on how this theme is conveyed.
Dick’s novel is open to a variety of interpretations from a variety of disciplines. However, since its appearance in the second half of the 20th century, it is the ideas that freely revolve around the banner of “postmodernism” that have become a popular means of defining this novel. However, due to its bewildering and diverse complexity, postmodernism as a movement is very difficult to describe. An academic shift toward postmodernism occurred in the mid-1980s, partly as a reaction to modernism, although it could also be seen as a response to Marxism. While Marxism tended to view people collectively, postmodernism emphasized the role of the individual, emphasizing consideration of a person’s gender, race, and sexual orientation, themes that are evident in Dick’s novels.
Several prominent thinkers have highlighted certain trends that they believe characterize the postmodern. Jean-Francois Lyotard highlights the skepticism of postmodernism regarding metanarratives. A metanarrative is an ideological structure that grants the legitimacy of certain actions, examples include Christianity, science, feminism, and Marxism. Marxism as a metanarrative would see the eventual overthrow of capitalism by the proletariat; However, the resistance of capitalism justifies postmodern skepticism with the meta narrative of Marxism. However, it is ironic that this distrust of metanarratives can be considered a metanarrative in itself. Fredric Jameson defines postmodernism as the result of an era of post-industrial capitalism, with multinational corporations now outside the control of national governments. Meanwhile, Jean Baudrillard discussed how image has come to dominate substance. The contamination of the real by the ‘simulacrum’, the copy without original, stands out.
The ideas of Lyotard, Jameson, and Baudrillard all figure within the narrative of Androids dream of electric sheep? Lyotard characterizes postmodernism by a state of mind of uncertainty and doubt, a state of mind that permeates Dick’s novel, intensifying as the story continues, perhaps culminating in the revelation that the supposedly divine Mercer was just a drunk actor. Jameson’s ideas about the dominance of multinational corporations are evident in the inability of the Western and Soviet governments to legislate against the Rosen Association. The androids – Roy, Irmgard, Max, Luba, Pris, and Rachael – could be seen as Baudrillardian mock copies, copies without originals, and these could distract us from appreciating human characters, such as Rick, Iran, Phil, and John.
There is a compelling ambivalence between the real and the unreal in Dick’s novel, evident in the notion that the central theme of Androids dream of electric sheep? it is an exploration of an individual’s response to the universe in which he must live. Unable to remain whole, protagonist Rick Deckard splits and occupies the schizoid half of his divided self, instead operating as a machine through the denial of his emotions, as if he were an android, while his schizoid self responds emotionally to its surroundings, however. still experiencing intense anxiety.
In relation to this figurative ‘split’ of the character, several other inhabitants of Dick’s novel, including androids, are depicted as doubles for various facets of Rick Deckard’s personality. From an economic point of view, Rick is shown as the supporter of their relationship and his partner, Iran, is portrayed as a housewife. However, in terms of any possible differentiation between masculinity and femininity in the novel, it is more fruitful to look at the relationship between Rick, the government android killer (and presumably the hero of the story), and the android opera singer Luba Luft. Rick begins to question his own humanity when confronted by Luba, who points out that in his ruthless slaughter of androids, he could be considered an android himself, especially since he believes that the defining quality of an android is a lack of empathy. ‘”” Said Miss Luft, “you must be an android” (p. 86). In contrast to Rick, Luba is portrayed as gentle and artistic: she sings Mozart beautifully and cares for Edvard Munch, “Luba Luft … was absorbed in the image before her” (p.113). Luba is killed by Rick and Phil Resch, another assassin who also represents a facet of Rick’s character. The protagonist initially presumes that Resch is an android, as he has encountered an individual with a complete lack of empathy. However, the irony is that Resch is actually human.
A quality Androids dream of electric sheep? possesses is that it does not present any prevailing opinion. Dick’s reliance on literary duplication and heavy use of metaphor ultimately means that it is very difficult to identify any claims that he replaces in his novel, certainly one related to genre, which as a theme is somewhat marginalized in the novel. In this case, masculinity is best understood when juxtaposed with its polar opposite, femininity. In Androids dream of electric sheep? Rick Deckard’s character seems to be based on a very particular male image, although due to the metaphorical division of his personality and his various manifestations in other individuals throughout the book, it is difficult to come up with definitive statements on Dick’s part regarding him. gender.