Technology and Morality:
The Stuff of Steampunk
Keywords:Anachrotechnofetishism, The Diamond Age, material culture, neo-Victorians, posthuman, science and technology studies, steampunk, Neal Stephenson, things
This article examines steampunk as an investigation of things and our relationships to them. Analysing the recycling of Victorian things in both the works of steampunk artists who displayed their work at Anachrotechnofetishism (a 2008 steampunk art show) and in Neal Stephenson’s The Diamond Age (1995), I suggest that if steampunk can avoid the desire for complete knowledge and mastery that some of its proponents express, it offers unique opportunities to rethink the human, technology, and morality in a ‘posthuman’ world.