Anime's Human Machines

Paprika

In 1963 Osamu Tezuka’s TV series Astro Boy brought a new kind of robot to Japan. The robot child with a loving heart began a line of compelling, conflicted cyborgs whose existence challenges humanity.

Japanese animation has embraced robotics, cybernetics and artificial intelligence as major themes. More interestingly, it uses these themes to explore complex moral and social questions: humanity’s responsibility for its actions, response to the other, greed, short-termism, failure to care for the ecosystem that sustains us.

Our season examines the challenge of the man-machine interface through eight films on various aspects of humanity’s response to technological change. One interesting factor to emerge from these films is how our own view of technology has changed since the earliest was released. Another is how humanity still refuses responsibility for the impact of our actions. These films give no answers, but suggest responses.

Supported by Wellcome

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Sasakawa Foundation

In association with

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Official event

Japan-UK Season of Culture

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Part of Life Rewired

A season exploring what it means to be human when technology is changing everything

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