by Malinda Seu (MDes ’19) — Recipient of the Design Studies Thesis Prize
This is not a book about women and technology. Nor was this book created for women. Throughout these pages, scholars, hackers, artists, and activists of all regions, races, sexual orientations, and genetic make-ups consider how humans might reconstruct themselves by way of technology. What is a woman anyway?
The creation and use of this catalog is a social and political act. The texts, organizations, events, and other media aggregated herein push against the dominant understanding of internet history. We are taught to focus on engineering, the military-industrial complex, and the grandfathers who created the architecture and protocol. But the internet is not only a network of cables, servers, and computers. It is an environment that shapes and is shaped by its inhabitants.
As a publication, this catalog is the site around which a public is formed. However, this public is broader than those of the individual entries or categories included in this index. Together, these works map the radical techno-critical activism that shapes a cyberfeminist counterpublic. The publication takes the name cyberfeminism as an umbrella, complicates it, and pushes it into plain sight for others to respond and build upon. To name something is to claim its existence.