TRANSGRESSIVE TECHNOLOGICAL WEAPONS OF WAR: CONTROLLING WITCHES, WEARING UNIFORMS, MANAGING VOIDS, AND ENHANCING BODIES

The growing popularity of anime and manga since the early 1990s not only generated passionate community of fans around the world, but also an increasing body of academic work taking the emerging media more seriously than ever. Topics such as gendered stereotypes, the psychology of the otaku’s desire, unconventional gender representations, and so on have contributed to this relatively new field of study. Analyses of the ‘technological body’, dealing with questions of post-humanism and its relationship to gender, have paved the way to rethinking the body in significant ways. The complexity of the technological body and its depictions in anime and manga, however, requires exploring new avenues that further challenge the boundaries of the body. This essay will present a fresh perspective on the technological body by building on current scholarship emphasizing its transformative features, as well as adding a layer of complexity to the analysis by examining the intertwined nature of technology and war in reshaping the human body into a weapon with which to wage war, in the context of four selected works: Strike Witches, Kill la Kill, Guilty Crown, and Saikano: The Last Love Song on This Little Planet.

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