TOE - Poetica Vaginal

I just finished listening to Benjamin Walker's Theory of Everything podcast about the Poetica Vaginal project, where a bunch of intellectuals from several universities got together to beam recordings of human vaginal contractions into space as a sort of SETI art project.

One of the problems with [previous attempts to communicate with extraterrestrials] is that there were episodes of sexual censorship: in the first messages we sent a line drawing of a male human being complete with external genitalia but a line drawing of a female human being without any external genitalia. We sent a picture of man and Barbie Doll into deep space to communicate with aliens as if they weren't entitled to know what we look like. It was really a picture of our own intolerance and it got worse with the Voyager probes ... where NASA prohibited entirely images of nude human beings. Aristotle knew that you had to reveal yourself to yourself before you can reveal yourself to anyone else. He writes about this in his book on poetics. He calls it the reognition and reversal principle. So.. really, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence is an excercise in comminucation with ourselves.

The project was ultimately stopped by the US Air Force. Isn't that amazing? The US has the balls and foresight to spend millions of wingwangs sending data about ourselves into deep space, but cant send an uncensored picture of what we look like, it's as if we're embarassed about having human bodies. The subtext of our grand message to other sentince seems to be ''we're a species with massive issues about our own sexuality'', probably the most honest thing we could say on the subject. Not sure why we need to bring it up in our first communications with other species.


Created 2006-06-21 17:20:39 by 197 and filed under introspection


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