NotaBene .


A story about the birth, development and future of the man-machine. Part 1

The article theorizes on the figure of the cyborg, or man-machine, established not only in science fiction but also in the humanities literature of the late 20th and early 21st centuries. The hypothesis presented here is that modern technologies and especially the NBIC complex turn the cyborg from a metaphor into a feasible opportunity, which in its final realization calls into question the original conditions of human existence. In its first part, the text analyzes some of the most popular views on human empowerment, focusing on the transhumanitarian movement and its human optimization program through two major transitions that have so far marked a demarcation line - from therapy to improvement and from chance to choice. Emphasis is also placed on the implicit presence of this program in other futuristic visions of man, in the present bioeconomies, as well as in the long-established techniques of cosmetic surgery.In its second part, the article returns to the origins of the concept of "man-machine", tracing its genealogy to the works of modern philosophers. Certain pathologies in the development of the modern project are analyzed, which directly or indirectly determine the epiphenomena of the present. The third part of the text reflects on the risks to the human future, which are rooted in the unlimited development and use of modern technologies in the era of neoliberal capitalism. In its thematization of the realized metaphor of "man-machine" the article stays away from the core of the debate on modern biopower, trying to derive and classify the basic - ethically and utilitarian - theoretical intuitions on the end of human. In this context, she mainly uses the works of Sandel, Fukuyama and Habermas, as well as articles and lectures by authors in the field of natural and information sciences.
Keywords: man-machine, cyborg, biopower, transhumanitarian movement, biotechnologies


Psychological and Philosophical Aspects of the Topic of Consumption in the Works of Herbert Marcuse and Erich Fromm. Contemporary Resonance. Part 1

The article analyzes the topic of consumption in the critical theories of Herbert Marcuse and Erich Fromm. In its first part, it examines Marcuse's conception of a repressive society and the place and function of consumption in it. The text emphasizes Marcuse's thesis about the dominance of the principle of productivity in repressive civilization, about the possibilities for its abolition and the creation of a non-repressive order that will weaken the compulsions of the urge to consume. The second part of the article deals with the problem of consumption in the perspective of Erich Fromm's views on freedom, love, and the two orientations of existence to have or to be. The psychological, existential, and ecological consequences of the dominance of the possessive attitude and its most widespread modern mode consumption are traced. The presented analyzes allow the formulation of the thesis about consumption as an escape of freedom, a form of passivity, and denial of the opportunities for non-pathological development of both the individual and society. The third paragraph of the study is based on the finding of the consumptive nature of modern Western societies and attempts to assess the theoretical potential of Marcuse's and Fromm's reflections on consumption in terms of the present.
Keywords: consumption, repressive society, principle of productivity, productiveness, spontaneous activity


MMORPG Simulation and the Wondrous World of Resurrection

The paper aims to analyze an important contemporary cultural and social phenomenon the development of online video games and especially of MMOG (massively multiplayer online game) and MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game), the increasing interest and addiction to them. The research studies the merging of actuality and virtuality in the cyber games, generated from their specific status: the blurring boundaries between the real space and time of the gamer and the virtual time-space of the game; the borrowing of rules and possibilities from the real world combined with fantastic and fairy creatures and situations. The paper also examines different factors of the MMORPGs attractiveness: on one side - the perfect computer graphics, achieved by means of the digital technologies and creating stunning virtual worlds and on the other side the liberty in the choice of character, role, gender, race, appearance and behavior provided by the game. The research analyzes the satisfaction of various gamers needs in the accomplished virtual world that drives to sinking in the game, neglecting the actual life and distorted pictures of what is allowed and possible in the game and in the reality. The research expresses the hypothesis that the exclusion of the body from the online games is a serious cause for the disturbance of the human existential-phenomenological relation to the world and in this sense determines as the thinning of the social ties in our times as the diagnostication of new psychological disorders connected with the internet addiction.
Keywords: internet addiction, cyber games, mmog, virtual world, simulation


The Reproductive Body and the Recaptured Womanhood in the Period of the Late Socialism in Bulgaria

Abstract: The article analyses the pro natal policies of late socialism in Bulgaria. It compares the early communist practices and ideology focused on the ideal figure of woman shock worker with those of the late communist regime oriented towards the favoring of maternity. This accent on the role of woman as a mother changes the emancipatory politics of the regime and ultimately leads to recapturing of femininity of socialist women.

Keywords: reproduction, womanhood, bio politics, pro natal policies