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A hybrid being: half human, half machine (a contraction of ‘cybernetic organism’). The term was first coined in 1960 by the Austrian-American space scientist Manfred Clynes (b.1925), though such creatures had featured in science-fiction since the 1920s and they have long been with us in everyday life in the form of mechanical elements (such as prosthetic limbs) incorporated into the human body. However, they caught the public imagination, e.g. in the TV series, Six Million Dollar Man (1974–78). The concept was taken up by Haraway in 1985, to explore the blurring of the boundaries between the organic and the technological as a radical challenge to biological essentialism (see also cyberfeminism).

Subjects: Literature.

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