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The Relevance of Ghost in the Shell: SAC in Today's Society

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Joined: 20 Dec 2006
Posts: 58
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:00 pm Reply with quote
How relevant do you feel the philosophy and sociological themes present in GitS: SAC (particularly 2nd GiG) are today? Are they just a plot element designed to make the show more interesting and intellectual? Or has Shirow Masamune hit upon something?

I think that if you remove certain cyber punk elements, the basis of social theory present is well worth consideration. Most present in the series is the titular “Stand Alone Complex” where the unrelated actions of individuals, who are unaware or have no contact with one another, create an effort in concert.

The Stand Alone Complex may prove to be key in the state of progress and change (Not just revolution, put but the former phenomena on any social level). As Gouda tried to bring about a refugee revolution, with the goal being granted an autonomous state, others may realize that change must be brought forth, and may very well utilize the stand alone complex to bring about said change.

How exactly the SAC may come to be fabricated I’m not sure. We obviously do not have cyber brains and so therefore cannot be infected with a virus. Nor do many of us have the kind of political clout that Gouda does. However, as I said, there are different social levels on which the SAC may be manifested, so there is not always a need for a medium as dramatic and mysterious as nation wide data manipulation.

Of course, the Stand Alone Complex could be utilized to repress change, if those who possess the SAC believe that changed has yet to be warranted, or wish to safeguard against unnecessary change.

In conclusion, a Stand Alone Complex could be used to bring about change or halt change. This could be for good or for worse, depending on the ideology of those who possess the SAC. In my personal opinion, this makes the Stand Alone Complex highly relevant to any society, as any society is always in a state of constant change and development.
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Joined: 16 Mar 2006
Posts: 552
Location: Oregon, Is it FOOTBALL yet?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:25 pm Reply with quote
This topic is something I have wondered off and on myself.

First let me run a biological perspective. One, with cyborg bodies, and cyber brains, we would not get real viruses, we also would not have any immune system, and we would not have any endocrine system. Without an endocrine system, we have no hormones. No testosterone, no estrogen, no progesterone, no adrenaline. Would we act like people without those basic chemicals in our bodies? Men, I don't think would be the same, or even close. I bet the two sexes would perhaps be closer, but people would drift farther apart. Why would we need to be with anyone?

Second, the philosophical stuff. This is something I am bad at, so please to excuse me. I haven't verified at the library the works cited as say the book that inspired the individual eleven, or anything besides J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye, but I have assumed that they were real books. And if those books written in our, past, have valid points in the future, why shouldn't it be something that same future may have to deal with then?

People are people, until we aren't people anymore, right? We will have many of the same struggles, as we have had in the past. I mean, that's why people still read holy books written thousands of years ago to find answers to the problems of today.

What will be problematic, is if we do not keep aware of what had happened, what is happening, in order to continue to improve upon the future. Being unaware is so much of the problem.
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Joined: 20 Dec 2006
Posts: 58
Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:36 pm Reply with quote
On the virus note, I was refering to the computer virus hidden in the eleventh essay (that's not entirely true, the virus WAS the essay).

You've brought up a good point. How would a person who was cybernised at an early age (like the Major) develop properly? I would imagine they would have leave the pituitary gland untouched. Overall, development in all areas of the human body and psyche would present a conundrum when cybernisation is introduced into the equation

J.D. Salinger is real enough. But the man who wrote the Individual Eleven, the book containing 10 essays on revolution, Patrick Sylvester, is a fictional creation of Shirow Masamune, as a plot device for the second season.

However, the themes from Stand Alone complex are not in The Catcher in the Rye, or The Laughing Man. These books are merely being refered to (quite a lot though).
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