The Many Themes of William Gibson's Neuromancer


Length: 1130 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Excellent
Open Document
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document



William Gibson's Neuromancer is a complex story that deals with the future computer technology and the impact on the lives of the world citizens. There are themes of love, betrayal, trust, and forbidden knowledge within each of the story lines of the book. These story lines give a human quality to a world that is described as being controlled by computers and technology. Also throughout the book Gibson brings in the ethical and moral values of the debate over what cost humanity takes as technology advances. In the early 1900s when Henry Ford first used the automatic conveyor belt it came at the cost of hiring manual labor to do the job. The usage of the conveyor belt, however, redefined the factory assembly line. As with the previous example, technology comes with the advancement of a culture, but with those advancements come the decline of some part of the human aspect of the previous way of life. Sometimes this advancement is for the better and aids the next generation do more for their culture as well as the world, but there are those advancements that degrade humanity and cause more harm than good for the rest of society. Gibson deals with this debate and brings it into the modern era with creation of the Internet and World Wide Web in the late 1980s. Case as well as the other characters were faced with the underlying plot of if what they were doing for Wintermute was the right thing to do, and how would it effect the rest of society.

 

The underlying tension throughout the entire novel is the fear of who do you trust and who will betray me next. In the opening of the novel Case is trying to figure out why a drug lord is looking for him and what will the drug leader do with him. Case received a drug shipment from Wage, the drug lord, and has not paid Wage for the drugs. He goes to one of his friends, Julius Deane, to figure out what to do and what Wage is trying to do to Case, and later in the novel Deane becomes a leader in the mission to sabotage Tessier-Ashpool. There is an incident between Case and Jules as the story develops where Jules has been taken over by Wintermute, and revels to Case that he in fact killed Linda Lee, Case's love.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"The Many Themes of William Gibson's Neuromancer." 123HelpMe.com. 20 Jul 2017
    <http://www.123HelpMe.com/view.asp?id=4359>.
Title Length Color Rating  
Essay on Identity in William Gibson’s Neuromancer - The Question of Identity in William Gibson’s Neuromancer      William Gibson’s Neuromancer is a science fiction novel that is seen by many as the preeminent work of the “cyberpunk” genre.  Neuromancer, like the countless others of its kind to follow, addresses themes concerning identity and/or lack there of.  The “cyberpunk” genre as argued by Bruce Sterling was born out of the 1980's and was due in part to the rapid decentralization of technology.  With the influx of computers, the internet, and virtual reality into the everyday household came technological discoveries that affected the individual.  Certain themes that are central to “cyberpunk” involve implanted circuitry, cosmetic surge...   [tags: Neuromancer]
:: 1 Works Cited
983 words
(2.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
William Gibson’s Neuromancer is Cyberpunk Essay - William Gibson’s Neuromancer is Cyberpunk  Science fiction somehow manages to place human characters in situations where the ideas and the thoughts of science and morality are intertwined.  Science fiction must have some idea components and some human components to be successful.  This novel seems to be a contrast to the believers in technological progress as it presents a colorful, but depressing and desolate future. The loss of individuality due to technological advances becomes a major theme in cyberpunk.  This presents a dismal view of the individual in society.  The cyberpunk genre developed from “a new kind of integration.  The overlapping of worlds that were formerly separate: the...   [tags: Neuromancer]
:: 1 Works Cited
683 words
(2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
William Gibson’s Neuromancer is the Penultimate Cyberpunk Novel Essay - William Gibson’s Neuromancer is the Penultimate Cyberpunk Novel It could be the near future or the distant future. It could be in the biggest companies or in your den. It could be traditional science fiction or it could be cyberpunk. Technology is pervasive. There is nothing in our lives that technology does not touch; it doesn’t matter if you use it directly, chances are that something (if not everything) in your life relies on technology to function or even exist. "Traditional" science fiction, if there even is such a thing, uses extrapolation as a foundation for its stories....   [tags: Neuromancer]
:: 2 Works Cited
842 words
(2.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
William Gibson’s Neuromancer Fits the Definition of Cyberpunk Essay - William Gibson’s Neuromancer Fits the Definition of Cyberpunk      What is cyberpunk. What criteria must be entailed to fall into this category. In hopes of coming to an understandable definition  this elusive category of cyberpunk I turned to the article “Storming the Reality Studio: A Casebook of Cyberpunk and Postmodern Science Fiction - Preface from Mirrorshades”, to illustrate how Neuromancer follows the cyberpunk category. The first part of the definition is the “certain central themes [that] come up repeatedly in cyberpunk....   [tags: Neuromancer]
:: 1 Works Cited
839 words
(2.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Understanding Technology in Neuromancer Essay - ... He then assembles a crew of people so they can use Case’s excellent computer skills to their advantage. Riviera is the antagonist of the novel. He is a sociopathic drug-user. The crew hires Riviera because he is also an excellent hacker and they need his help to coordinate a heist. However, Riviera’s sociopathic nature becomes a major flaw in his personality and he tries to sabotage their entire operation by becoming a traitor and joining the enemy. Wintermute, an intangible character, is an important holographic artificial intelligence of cyberspace that all the characters want to be able to access Setting Neuromancer takes place mainly in four futuristic settings where the characters...   [tags: William Gibson, novel, literary analysis] 892 words
(2.5 pages)
Research Papers [preview]
Cyberspace in William Gibson's Neuromancer Essay - Cyberspace in William Gibson's Neuromancer As described by William Gibson in his science fiction novel Neuromancer, cyberspace was a "Consensual hallucination that felt and looked like a physical space but actuallly was a computer-generated construct representing abstract data." Years later, mankind has realized that Gibson's vision is very close to reality. The term cyberspace was frequently used to explain or describe the process in which two computers connect with each other through various telephone lines....   [tags: essays research papers] 693 words
(2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about William Gibson’s Neuromancer: the Creation of a Language - William Gibson’s Neuromancer: the Creation of a Language Published in 1984, Gibson’s Neuromancer, with its vision of technological and impersonal life in the twenty-first century, echoes George Orwell’s ironic commentary on the controlling and dehumanising bureaucracy associated with post-war society. Writing in an era when technological and scientific advances are increasingly prominent, often to the detriment of humanity, Gibson differs from other science fiction writers in that he uses existing contemporary themes and issues, forecasting a possible and believable future and simultaneously providing a commentary on late twentieth-century society which his audience can relate to....   [tags: Essays Papers] 692 words
(2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about The Works of William Ford Gibson - In 1984, Neuromancer, the debut novel of a largely unambitious American-Canadian named William Ford Gibson was published. Opening with the line, “The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel,” Gibson unwittingly tapped into the emerging literary and artistic aesthetic known as cyberpunk, realized previously in the form of films such as Blade Runner and in the works of fellow science fiction writers such as Bruce Sterling. In Neuromancer, a disgraced ex-hacker named Henry Dorsett Case, who has been literally drained of his talents after attempting to double-cross his last employer, is hired by a mysterious benefactor willing to restore his talents for the ultima...   [tags: Cyberpunk Hacker Hacking]
:: 10 Works Cited
1774 words
(5.1 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay on Realities Redefined in William Gibson's Neuromancer - Realities Redefined in William Gibson's Neuromancer The ways in which characters communicate and interact with one another are redefined in William Gibson?s Neuromancer. An all-encompassing web of intrigue, the Net enables humans and non-humans to access and to communicate an infinite amount of data across time and space. Medical implants open another door on virtual communications. Non-living entities such as artificial intelligences and the Dixie Flatline construct overcome the physical barriers of communication....   [tags: Neuromancer Gibson William Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
2642 words
(7.5 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Shaping Identity in William Gibson's Neuromancer Essay - Shaping Identity in William Gibson's Neuromancer The number “one” is not a thing. Math has no definitive reality. Numbers are a social construct, a system of symbols designed to express the abstractions through which properly developed societies explain aspects of reality. It follows that, as humanity seeks to understand more of what it is to exist, bigger numbers are needed. Soon, we need machines to understand the numbers. Society plants a base on information technology, efficiency, and a mechanical precision that is startling....   [tags: Numbers Gibson Neuromancer Identity Essays]
:: 7 Works Cited
2079 words
(5.9 pages)
Term Papers [preview]

Related Searches




This act of betrayal of Jules upsets Case and will further drive him in his job later on in the story. Again, Wintermute reveals to Case that he did this act just to enrage Case, and drive him to complete the job he was assigned. Another early example of betrayal, again to Case, was when Armitage was able to get him to join the force to run on Straylight. When Case agreed to join Armitage, he agreed to provide Case with a new liver, and pancreas. When Armitage has this operation done, however, he places packs of myotoxins around the organs to insure Case will not be able to feel the effects of the drugs he was on and to insure that Case would not leave the group. This action by Armitage insured that at least Case would not betray him. At one point, Linda Lee betrays Case by stealing his RAM device. He is upset at this because he loved her, but he understood that the RAM was her ticket home. "He was finding it increasingly hard to maintain the sense of betrayal"(23). Throughout the entire scheme that Linda was playing on Case, he knew what she was doing and since he loved her he was allowing her to continue doing this.

 

Along with the idea that Case would allow Linda to manipulate him just to get back home, and that she was murdered by his current boss leads Case to a life filled with lost love. As stated earlier Wintermute killed Linda Lee so that he could give Case some hatred and motivation to complete the Straylight run. Case originally thought that his best and closest friend, Jules, was the killer and this disturbed him more than anything did because he did not understand why Jules would do something of that caliber. He was torn within himself because the two people he trusted most in life were gone, and could never be trusted in the same manner again. When Molly arrives in Case's life it becomes a purely sexual relationship with no level of emotional satisfaction. At the end of the story Case is again torn because Molly has left without telling anyone. Throughout the entire novel Case is searching for love to fulfill some void in his life, but he was never able to find this person. The main character that exemplifies the emotion and love in the story is Neuromancer. He tries to pull Case over to his side by using Case's feelings for Linda, and using the images of her to manipulate him. This does not work because Case was able to block his feelings and allow his anger to rule over his decision.

The main underlying issue that rules over both of the previous ones is that of forbidden knowledge. The knowledge of the mission and who was in charge became forbidden knowledge to those involved in the entire case. Case has no idea about whom Wintermute is or what the real leaders are who are running the missions, Matrix, or cyberworld. Throughout the novel knowledge about who the key players and their jobs are slowly reveled to the others as well as the readers. The knowledge about the real effects of the cyberworld and what is does to the population is forbidden to everyone until the after effects are seen many years later. The combination of Wintermute and Neuromancer and the effects of this are forbidden until the very end of the novel. The dystopia of the cyberworld is smoothed over by the end with the combination of Neuromancer (emotion) and Wintermute (reason), but there are still effects the dystopia.

 

The dystopia in the cyberworld leads to the downfall of the society that inhabits it. Since the late1980s the population of the United States has become less and less just or moral. Society has become more interested in instant gratification, which is given by the Internet, and a lack in the complete thoughts and ideas of the messages. Instead of processing the ideas in a thorough manner, one now wants the "skinny" or basic information of the message, and derives an opinion of the facts based on the slimmed information. Cyberworld is not a dystopia forever it is a growing and developing function in society, and when all the viruses are fixed it will be an advancement for all of society.


Return to 123HelpMe.com