Environmental Ethics

Volume 22, Issue 4, Winter 2000

Bill McCormick
Pages 409-418

The Island of Dr. Haraway

Donna Haraway’s cyberfeminism has shown considerable appeal on an interdisciplinary level. Her basic premise is that by the end of the twentieth century the boundary between humans and machines has become increasingly porous, and, whether we acknowledge it or not, we are already cyborgs. She also posits this cyborg identity as an acceptable emblem for progressive politics. I disagree, and cite such writers as Susan Bordo, Sharona Ben-Tov, and Jhan Hochman to highlight some of the weaknesses of her position. I argue that we have had repeated warnings about implications of yoking the human to the machine, and that Haraway’s “promising monsters” are anything but promising.