Holo-pursuits: holographic identity & agency in Star Trek: the Next Generation & Voyager
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameDoctor of Philosophy
In this thesis, I explore issues relating to holographic identity, agency and the place and position of the hologram in Star Trek. My critique of Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Voyager explores the nature of the hologram as a subordinate or subaltern class within the hegemonic environment of Starfleet, earth’s representative for space exploration and colonization. By bringing together issues of resistance and agency and the politics of simulacra identity, I argue that the figure of the hologram represents a struggle for power, agency, and voice. My focus is on the hologram’s journey towards agency and resistance against the hegemonic discourse of Starfleet. I examine how the hologram’s journey highlights the fictional disparities in power relations between the dominant and the marginalized within American science fiction television and demonstrate how this subjugation results in the silencing of the “Other”. I examine these complex issues utilising theories on humanism, posthumanism, postcolonialism, subaltern studies, animal rights, and artificial intelligence in order to demonstrate the relevance of science fiction television, and in particular, the fictional representations of the hologram in the study of the politics of identity. Within these Star Trek narratives, the hologram is often monopolized, dominated and exploited by the humanoid.