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AI NarrativesA History of Imaginative Thinking about Intelligent Machines$
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Stephen Cave, Kanta Dihal, and Sarah Dillon

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780198846666

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198846666.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 26 July 2021

Artificial Intelligence and the Parent–Child Narrative

Artificial Intelligence and the Parent–Child Narrative

Chapter:
(p.260) 11 Artificial Intelligence and the Parent–Child Narrative
Source:
AI Narratives
Author(s):

Beth Singler

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198846666.003.0012

This chapter employs anthropological approaches to examine the cultural influences on our stories about AI. First, the role of biological analogies in conceptions of AI will be highlighted. Second, a more nuanced approach to the anthropomorphism that results from such analogical thinking will be outlined, based on cognitive anthropology. This will allow us to identify specific intentional projections of human attributes that are mapped onto the nonhuman in our narratives. Third, we will consider how these projections come laden with cultural assumptions. Finally, the chapter will consider the parent–child relationship in AI narratives, and employ ethnographic research on the concept of the child to highlight what specific cultural assumptions about the human child, and then, subsequently, the AI child, are present in our stories.

Keywords:   Artificial intelligence, parent, child, science fiction, anthropology, anthropomorphism

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