Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

Notes for Group 1: Using Hayles to teach Conceiving Ada

tangerines's picture

Our group (vgaffney, izemmahi, and I) came up with several ideas for using Hayles's ideas to teach the movie Conceiving Ada. The first topic we discussed was posthuman scholarship. We thought that a “posthuman” mode of scholarship might look more like the depiction in the film of Emmy's obsession with Ada – scholars learning with technology and using new tools to alter the ways in which they learn. We then touched upon how the film encourages us to forget meaning by giving us a somewhat confusing narrative that requires us to ignore the smaller details in order to appreciate the larger, intellectually useful themes. Using this method might be too confusing in a classroom setting, so instead our group suggested that a way to teach students about Hayles's concepts using this film would be to have a discussion (similar to the one we had) to actively engage students. Another phrase we found interesting was “follow the data streams,” which seemed to us to be something that we do in this class. In class we also avoid the replication of paradigms and attempt to redefine terms and re-conceive ideas to allow us to broaden our horizons.

In answer to the final question of the discussion, the group concluded that an interesting way to teach Hayles & the film would be to have a discussion on Hayles's ideas beforehand – as we did in class – and then having students watch the movie online and post to a chatroom as they did so, to allow for instant feedback between students and professors. In this way the Hayles (albeit through the professor) would be able to guide the viewing of the film to help students ignore incongruities in the plot and focus instead on the ways in which the film is helpful. After the film, we would recommend another discussion to allow students to bring up any further questions or ideas which occurred to them.



Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
11 + 8 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.