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Orphan Black
Performance, Gender, Biopolitics
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ISBN 9781783209224
Paperback 222 pages
Published January 2019
Imprint: Intellect

Orphan Black: Performance, Gender, Biopolitics presents a groundbreaking exploration of the hit television series Orphan Black, and the questions it raises for performance and technology, gender and reproduction, and biopolitics and community.

Contributors from a range of backgrounds explore the digital innovations and technical interactions between human and machine that allow the show to challenge conventional notions of performance and identity. The essays within address family themes and explore Orphan Black’s own textual genealogy; extend their inquiry to the broader question of community in a ‘posthuman’ world of biopolitical power by looking at the contexts of science, reproductive technology and the politics of gender; and finally, mobilize philosophy, history of science and literary theory in order to analyse the ways in which Orphan Black depicts resistance to the many forms of power that attempt to capture, monitor and shape life today.

Andrea Goulet is professor and graduate chair of French and francophone studies at the University of Pennsylvania.

Robert A. Rushing is professor of Italian and comparative literature at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. 


Table of Contents


Andrea Goulet and Robert A. Rushing

Part One: Performance/Technology/Gender
Gesture in Orphan Black
David F. Bell

Playing with TechnoDollies: The TV Actress and Other Technologies
Christopher Grobe

Animating Cloning: Special Effects and Mediated Bodies in Orphan Black and Jurassic Park
Simon Porzak

Watching While (Face) Blind: Clone Layering and Prosopagnosia
Sharrona Pearl

Part Two: Reproduction/Biopolitics/Community
Game of Clones: Orphan Black’s Family Romance
John C. Stout

Orphan Black and the Ideology of DNA
Hilary Neroni

Being Together: Immunity and Community in Orphan Black
Jessica Tanner

The Dancing Women: Decoding Biopolitical Fantasy
Robert A. Rushing

The Replicant’s ‘Réplique’: Motherhood and the Posthuman Family as Resistance in Orphan Black
Andrea Goulet

Afterword: Reflections on the Show, and Interviews with Cast, Crew and Creators
Lili Loofbourow

Appendix: Orphan Black Episodes


Notes on Contributors



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