Cyberpunk is a subgenre of science fiction in a futuristic setting
that tends to focus on "a combination of low life and high tech"
featuring advanced technological and scientific achievements, such as
artificial intelligence and cybernetics, juxtaposed with a degree of
breakdown or radical change in the social order.
Much of cyberpunk is rooted in the
New Wave science fiction movement
of the 1960s and 70s, when writers like Philip K. Dick, Roger Zelazny,
J. G. Ballard, Philip Jose Farmer, and
Harlan Ellison examined the
impact of drug culture, technology, and the sexual revolution while
avoiding the utopian tendencies of earlier science fiction. Released
in 1984, William Gibson’s influential debut novel
help solidify cyberpunk as a genre, drawing influence from punk
subculture and early hacker culture. Other influential cyberpunk
Bruce Sterling and Rudy Rucker.
Early films in the genre include Ridley Scott’s 1982 film Blade
Runner, one of several of Philip K. Dick's works that have been
adapted into films. The films Johnny Mnemonic and New Rose
Hotel, both based upon short stories by William Gibson, flopped
commercially and critically. More recent additions to this genre of
filmmaking include the 2013 film Snowpiercer, the 2017 release of
Blade Runner 2049, the sequel to the original 1982 film, and the 2018
Netflix TV series Altered Carbon.
2 History and origins
3 Style and ethos
3.3 Society and government
4.1.1 Reception and impact
4.2 Film and television
Anime and manga
5 Social impact
5.1 Art and architecture
5.2 Society and counterculture
5.3 Related genres
7 See also
9 External links
Lawrence Person has attempted to define the content and ethos of the
cyberpunk literary movement stating:
Classic cyberpunk characters were marginalized, alienated loners who
lived on the edge of society in generally dystopic futures where daily
life was impacted by rapid technological change, an ubiquitous
datasphere of computerized information, and invasive modification of
the human body.
— Lawrence Person
Cyberpunk plots often center on conflict among artificial
intelligences, hackers, and megacorporations, and tend to be set in a
near-future Earth, rather than in the far-future settings or galactic
vistas found in novels such as Isaac Asimov's Foundation or Frank
Herbert's Dune. The settings are usually post-industrial dystopias
but tend to feature extraordinary cultural ferment and the use of
technology in ways never anticipated by its original inventors ("the
street finds its own uses for things"). Much of the genre's
atmosphere echoes film noir, and written works in the genre often use
techniques from detective fiction.
History and origins
The origins of cyberpunk are rooted in the New Wave science fiction
movement of the 1960s and 70s, where New Worlds, under the editorship
of Michael Moorcock, began inviting and encouraging stories that
examined new writing styles, techniques, and archetypes. Replacing the
celebration of conformity to norms intrinsic in conventional
storytelling, New Wave authors attempted to present a world where
society coped with a constant upheaval of new technology and culture,
generally with dystopian outcomes. Writers like Roger Zelazny, J.G.
Ballard, Philip Jose Farmer, and
Harlan Ellison often examined the
impact of drug culture, technology, and sexual revolution with an
avant-garde style influenced by the
Beat Generation (especially
William S. Burroughs' own SF), dadaism, and their own rhetorical
ideas. Ballard attacked the idea that stories should follow the
"archetypes" popular since the time of Ancient Greece, that these
would somehow be the same ones that would call to modern readers, as
Joseph Campbell argued in The Hero with a Thousand Faces. Instead,
Ballard wanted to write a new myth for the modern reader, a style with
"more psycho-literary ideas, more meta-biological and meta-chemical
concepts, private time systems, synthetic psychologies and
space-times, more of the sombre half-worlds one glimpses in the
paintings of schizophrenics."
This had a profound influence on a new generation of writers, some of
whom would come to call themselves "Cyberpunk". One, Bruce Sterling,
In the circle of American science fiction writers of my generation —
cyberpunks and humanists and so forth — [Ballard] was a towering
figure. We used to have bitter struggles over who was more Ballardian
than whom. We knew we were not fit to polish the man’s boots, and we
were scarcely able to understand how we could get to a position to do
work which he might respect or stand, but at least we were able to see
the peak of achievement that he had reached.
Ballard, Zelazny, and the rest of New Wave was seen by the subsequent
generation as delivering more "realism" to science fiction, and they
attempted to build on this.
Similarly influential, and generally cited as proto-cyberpunk, is the
Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, first
published in 1968. Presenting precisely the general feeling of
dystopian post-economic-apocalyptic future as Gibson and Sterling
later deliver, it examines ethical and moral problems with cybernetic,
artificial intelligence in a way more "realist" than the Isaac Asimov
Robot series that laid its philosophical foundation. This novel was
made into the seminal movie Blade Runner, released in 1982, one year
after another story, "Johnny Mnemonic" helped move proto-cyberpunk
concepts into the mainstream. This story, which also became a film
years later, involves another dystopian future, where human couriers
deliver computer data, stored cybernetically in their own minds.
In 1983 a short story written by Bruce Bethke, called Cyberpunk, was
published in Amazing Stories. The term was picked up by Gardner
Dozois, editor of
Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine
Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine and
popularized in his editorials. Bethke says he was made two lists of
words, one for technology, one for troublemakers, and experimented
with combining them variously into compound words, consciously
attempting to coin a term that encompassed both punk attitudes and
He described the idea thus:
The kids who trashed my computer; their kids were going to be Holy
Terrors, combining the ethical vacuity of teenagers with a technical
fluency we adults could only guess at. Further, the parents and other
adult authority figures of the early 21st Century were going to be
terribly ill-equipped to deal with the first generation of teenagers
who grew up truly “speaking computer.”
Afterward, Dozois began using this term in his own writing, most
notably in a Washington Post article where he said "About the closest
thing here to a self-willed esthetic “school” would be the
purveyors of bizarre hard-edged, high-tech stuff, who have on occasion
been referred to as “cyberpunks” — Sterling, Gibson, Shiner,
About that time, William Gibson's novel
Neuromancer was published,
delivering the glimpse of a future encompassed by what became an
archetype of cyberpunk "virtual reality", with the human mind being
fed light-based worldscapes through a computer interface. Some,
perhaps ironically including Bethke himself, argued at the time that
the writers whose style Gibson's books epitomized should be called
"Neuromantics", a pun on the name of the novel plus "New Romantics", a
term used for a New Wave pop music movement that had just occurred in
Britain, but this term did not catch on. Bethke later paraphrased
Michael Swanwick's argument for the term: "the movement writers should
properly be termed neuromantics, since so much of what they were doing
was clearly Imitation Neuromancer".
Sterling was another writer who played a central role, often
consciously, in the cyberpunk genre, variously seen as keeping it on
track, or distorting its natural path into a stagnant formula. In
1986 he edited a volume of cyberpunk stories called Mirrorshades: The
Cyberpunk Anthology, an attempt to establish what cyberpunk was, from
In the subsequent decade, the archetypes so perfectly framed in
Neuromancer became increasingly used as tropes in the genre,
climaxing in the satirical extremes of Neal Stephenson's
Snow Crash in
Cyberpunk era, Bethke himself published a novel in 1995
called Headcrash: like
Snow Crash a satirical attack on the genre's
excesses. It won the key cyberpunk honor named after its spiritual
Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick Award.
It satirized the genre in this way:
...full of young guys with no social lives, no sex lives and no hope
of ever moving out of their mothers' basements ... They're total
wankers and losers who indulge in Messianic fantasies about someday
getting even with the world through almost-magical computer skills,
but whose actual use of the Net amounts to dialing up the scatophilia
forum and downloading a few disgusting pictures. You know,
The impact of cyberpunk, though, has been long-lasting. Elements of
both the setting and storytelling have become normal in science
fiction in general, and a slew of sub-genres now have -punk tacked
onto their names, most obviously Steampunk, but also a host of other
Style and ethos
Primary exponents of the cyberpunk field include William Gibson, Neal
Stephenson, Bruce Sterling, Bruce Bethke, Pat Cadigan, Rudy Rucker,
John Shirley and
Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick (author of Do Androids Dream of
Electric Sheep?, from which the film
Blade Runner was adapted).
Blade Runner can be seen as a quintessential example of the cyberpunk
style and theme. Video games, board games, and tabletop
role-playing games, such as
Cyberpunk 2020 and Shadowrun, often
feature storylines that are heavily influenced by cyberpunk writing
and movies. Beginning in the early 1990s, some trends in fashion and
music were also labeled as cyberpunk.
Cyberpunk is also featured
prominently in anime and manga: Akira, Gunnm, Ghost in the Shell,
Cowboy Bebop, Serial Experiments Lain, Dennou Coil,
Ergo Proxy and
Psycho Pass being among the most notable.
Shibuya, Tokyo. Of Japan's influence on the genre, William Gibson
Japan simply was cyberpunk."
Cyberpunk writers tend to use elements from hardboiled detective
fiction, film noir, and postmodernist prose to describe an often
nihilistic underground side of an electronic society. The genre's
vision of a troubled future is often called the antithesis of the
generally utopian visions of the future popular in the 1940s and
1950s. Gibson defined cyberpunk's antipathy towards utopian SF in his
1981 short story "The Gernsback Continuum," which pokes fun at and, to
a certain extent, condemns utopian science fiction.
In some cyberpunk writing, much of the action takes place online, in
cyberspace, blurring the line between actual and virtual reality.
A typical trope in such work is a direct connection between the human
brain and computer systems.
Cyberpunk settings are dystopias with
corruption, computers and internet connectivity. Giant, multinational
corporations have for the most part replaced governments as centers of
political, economic, and even military power.
The economic and technological state of
Japan is a regular theme in
Cyberpunk literature of the '80s. Of Japan's influence on the
William Gibson said, "Modern
Japan simply was cyberpunk."
Cyberpunk is often set in urbanized, artificial landscapes, and "city
lights, receding" was used by Gibson as one of the genre's first
metaphors for cyberspace and virtual reality. The cityscapes of
Hong Kong and Shanghai have had major influences in the urban
backgrounds, ambiance and settings in many cyberpunk works such as
Blade Runner and Shadowrun.
Ridley Scott envisioned the landscape of
Los Angeles in
Blade Runner to be "
Hong Kong on a very bad
day". The streetscapes of
Ghost in the Shell
Ghost in the Shell were based on Hong
Kong. Its director
Mamoru Oshii felt that Hong Kong's strange and
chaotic streets where "old and new exist in confusing relationships",
fit the theme of the film well. Hong Kong's
Kowloon Walled City
Kowloon Walled City is
particularly notable for its disorganized hyper-urbanization and
breakdown in traditional urban planning to be an inspiration to
One of the cyberpunk genre's prototype characters is Case, from
Gibson's Neuromancer. Case is a "console cowboy," a brilliant
hacker who has betrayed his organized criminal partners. Robbed of his
talent through a crippling injury inflicted by the vengeful partners,
Case unexpectedly receives a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be
healed by expert medical care but only if he participates in another
criminal enterprise with a new crew.
Like Case, many cyberpunk protagonists are manipulated, placed in
situations where they have little or no choice, and although they
might see things through, they do not necessarily come out any further
ahead than they previously were. These anti-heroes—"criminals,
outcasts, visionaries, dissenters and misfits"—call to mind the
private eye of detective fiction. This emphasis on the misfits and the
malcontents is the "punk" component of cyberpunk.
Society and government
Cyberpunk can be intended to disquiet readers and call them to action.
It often expresses a sense of rebellion, suggesting that one could
describe it as a type of culture revolution in science fiction. In the
words of author and critic David Brin:
...a closer look [at cyberpunk authors] reveals that they nearly
always portray future societies in which governments have become wimpy
and pathetic ...Popular science fiction tales by Gibson, Williams,
Cadigan and others do depict
Orwellian accumulations of power in the
next century, but nearly always clutched in the secretive hands of a
wealthy or corporate elite.
Cyberpunk stories have also been seen as fictional forecasts of the
evolution of the Internet. The earliest descriptions of a global
communications network came long before the
World Wide Web
World Wide Web entered
popular awareness, though not before traditional science-fiction
writers such as
Arthur C. Clarke
Arthur C. Clarke and some social commentators such as
James Burke began predicting that such networks would eventually
List of cyberpunk works § Print media, and Cyborgs in
Bruce Bethke coined the term in 1980 for his short
story "Cyberpunk," which was published in the November 1983 issue of
Amazing Science Fiction Stories. The term was quickly appropriated
as a label to be applied to the works of William Gibson, Bruce
Pat Cadigan and others. Of these, Sterling became the
movement's chief ideologue, thanks to his fanzine Cheap Truth. John
Shirley wrote articles on Sterling and Rucker's significance. John
Brunner's 1975 novel
The Shockwave Rider
The Shockwave Rider is considered by many[who?]
to be the first cyberpunk novel with many of the tropes commonly
associated with the genre, some five years before the term was
popularized by Dozois.
William Gibson with his novel
Neuromancer (1984) is arguably the most
famous writer connected with the term cyberpunk. He emphasized style,
a fascination with surfaces, and atmosphere over traditional
science-fiction tropes. Regarded as ground-breaking and sometimes as
"the archetypal cyberpunk work,"
Neuromancer was awarded the Hugo,
Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick Awards.
Count Zero (1986) and Mona Lisa
Overdrive (1988) followed after Gibson's popular debut novel.
According to the Jargon File, "Gibson's near-total ignorance of
computers and the present-day hacker culture enabled him to speculate
about the role of computers and hackers in the future in ways hackers
have since found both irritatingly naïve and tremendously
Early on, cyberpunk was hailed as a radical departure from
science-fiction standards and a new manifestation of vitality.
Shortly thereafter, however, some critics arose to challenge its
status as a revolutionary movement. These critics said that the SF New
Wave of the 1960s was much more innovative as far as narrative
techniques and styles were concerned. Furthermore, while
Neuromancer's narrator may have had an unusual "voice" for science
fiction, much older examples can be found: Gibson's narrative voice,
for example, resembles that of an updated Raymond Chandler, as in his
The Big Sleep
The Big Sleep (1939). Others noted that almost all traits
claimed to be uniquely cyberpunk could in fact be found in older
writers' works—often citing J. G. Ballard, Philip K. Dick, Harlan
Ellison, Stanisław Lem, Samuel R. Delany, and even William S.
Burroughs. For example, Philip K. Dick's works contain recurring
themes of social decay, artificial intelligence, paranoia, and blurred
lines between objective and subjective realities. The influential
Blade Runner (1982) is based on his book, Do Androids
Dream of Electric Sheep?. Humans linked to machines are found in
Pohl and Kornbluth's Wolfbane (1959) and Roger Zelazny's Creatures of
Light and Darkness (1968).
In 1994, scholar Brian Stonehill suggested that Thomas Pynchon's 1973
Gravity's Rainbow "not only curses but precurses what we now
glibly dub cyberspace." Other important predecessors include
Alfred Bester's two most celebrated novels,
The Demolished Man
The Demolished Man and The
Stars My Destination, as well as Vernor Vinge's novella True
Reception and impact
David Brin describes cyberpunk as "the finest
free promotion campaign ever waged on behalf of science fiction." It
may not have attracted the "real punks," but it did ensnare many new
readers, and it provided the sort of movement that postmodern literary
critics found alluring.
Cyberpunk made science fiction more attractive
to academics, argues Brin; in addition, it made science fiction more
profitable to Hollywood and to the visual arts generally. Although the
"self-important rhetoric and whines of persecution" on the part of
cyberpunk fans were irritating at worst and humorous at best, Brin
declares that the "rebels did shake things up. We owe them a
Fredric Jameson considers cyberpunk the "supreme literary expression
if not of postmodernism, then of late capitalism itself".
Cyberpunk further inspired many professional writers who were not
among the "original" cyberpunks to incorporate cyberpunk ideas into
their own works, such as George Alec Effinger's When
Gravity Fails. Wired magazine, created by Louis Rossetto and Jane
Metcalfe, mixes new technology, art, literature, and current topics in
order to interest today's cyberpunk fans, which Paula Yoo claims
"proves that hardcore hackers, multimedia junkies, cyberpunks and
cellular freaks are poised to take over the world."
Film and television
List of cyberpunk works § Films, and List of cyberpunk
works § Television and Web Series
Blade Runner (1982), an influential cyberpunk film.
Blade Runner (1982)—adapted from Philip K. Dick's Do
Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?—is set in 2019 in a dystopian
future in which manufactured beings called replicants are slaves used
on space colonies and are legal prey on
Earth to various bounty
hunters who "retire" (kill) them. Although
Blade Runner was largely
unsuccessful in its first theatrical release, it found a viewership in
the home video market and became a cult film. Since the movie
omits the religious and mythical elements of Dick's original novel
(e.g. empathy boxes and Wilbur Mercer), it falls more strictly within
the cyberpunk genre than the novel does.
William Gibson would later
reveal that upon first viewing the film, he was surprised at how the
look of this film matched his vision when he was working on
Neuromancer. The film's tone has since been the staple of many
cyberpunk movies, such as The Matrix trilogy (1999-2003), which uses a
wide variety of cyberpunk elements.
The number of films in the genre or at least using a few genre
elements has grown steadily since Blade Runner. Several of Philip K.
Dick's works have been adapted to the silver screen. The films Johnny
Mnemonic and New Rose Hotel, both based upon short stories by
William Gibson, flopped commercially and critically. These box offices
misses significantly slowed the development of cyberpunk as a literary
or cultural form although a sequel to the 1982 film
Blade Runner was
released in October 2017 with
Harrison Ford reprising his role from
the original film.
In addition, "tech-noir" film as a hybrid genre, means a work of
combining neo-noir and science fiction or cyberpunk. It includes many
cyberpunk films such as Blade Runner, Burst City, Robocop, 12
Monkeys, The Lawnmower Man, Hackers, Hardware, and Strange Days.
Anime and manga
List of cyberpunk works § Animation
Cyberpunk themes are widely visible in anime and manga. In Japan,
where cosplay is popular and not only teenagers display such fashion
styles, cyberpunk has been accepted and its influence is widespread.
William Gibson's Neuromancer, whose influence dominated the early
cyberpunk movement, was also set in Chiba, one of Japan's largest
industrial areas, although at the time of writing the novel Gibson did
not know the location of Chiba and had no idea how perfectly it fit
his vision in some ways. The exposure to cyberpunk ideas and fiction
in the mid 1980s has allowed it to seep into the Japanese culture.
Cyberpunk anime and manga draw upon a futuristic vision which has
elements in common with western science fiction and therefore have
received wide international acceptance outside Japan. "The
conceptualization involved in cyberpunk is more of forging ahead,
looking at the new global culture. It is a culture that does not exist
right now, so the Japanese concept of a cyberpunk future, seems just
as valid as a Western one, especially as Western cyberpunk often
incorporates many Japanese elements."
William Gibson is now a
frequent visitor to Japan, and he came to see that many of his visions
Japan have become a reality:
Japan simply was cyberpunk. The Japanese themselves knew it and
delighted in it. I remember my first glimpse of Shibuya, when one of
Tokyo journalists who had taken me there, his face drenched
with the light of a thousand media-suns—all that towering, animated
crawl of commercial information—said, "You see? You see? It is Blade
Runner town." And it was. It so evidently was.
Cyberpunk has influenced many anime and manga including the
ground-breaking Akira, Appleseed, Ghost in the Shell, Ergo Proxy,
Battle Angel Alita, Megazone 23, Neo Tokyo, Goku Midnight Eye, Cyber
City Oedo 808, Bubblegum Crisis, A.D. Police: Dead End City, Angel
Cop, Extra, Blame!, Armitage III, Texhnolyze, Serial Experiments Lain,
Neon Genesis Evangelion
Neon Genesis Evangelion and Psycho-Pass.
List of cyberpunk works § Video games, and List of
cyberpunk works § Role-playing games
There are many cyberpunk video games. Popular series include the
Megami Tensei series, Deus Ex series, Syndicate series, and System
Shock and its sequel. Other games, like Blade Runner, Ghost in the
Shell, and the Matrix series, are based upon genre movies, or
role-playing games (for instance the various
Shadowrun games). CD
Projekt Red is currently developing a cyberpunk game called "Cyberpunk
Several RPGs called
Cyberpunk exist: Cyberpunk,
Cyberpunk 2020 and
Cyberpunk v3, by R. Talsorian Games, and
GURPS Cyberpunk, published by
Steve Jackson Games
Steve Jackson Games as a module of the
GURPS family of RPGs. Cyberpunk
2020 was designed with the settings of William Gibson's writings in
mind, and to some extent with his approval, unlike
the approach taken by FASA in producing the transgenre
Both are set in the near future, in a world where cybernetics are
prominent. In addition,
Iron Crown Enterprises
Iron Crown Enterprises released an RPG named
Cyberspace, which was out of print for several years until recently
being re-released in online PDF form.
In 1990, in a convergence of cyberpunk art and reality, the United
States Secret Service raided Steve Jackson Games's headquarters and
confiscated all their computers. Officials denied that the target had
GURPS Cyberpunk sourcebook, but Jackson would later write
that he and his colleagues "were never able to secure the return of
the complete manuscript; [...] The Secret Service at first flatly
refused to return anything – then agreed to let us copy files, but
when we got to their office, restricted us to one set of out-of-date
files – then agreed to make copies for us, but said "tomorrow" every
day from March 4 to March 26. On March 26 we received a set of disks
which purported to be our files, but the material was late, incomplete
and well-nigh useless."
Steve Jackson Games
Steve Jackson Games won a lawsuit against
the Secret Service, aided by the new Electronic Frontier Foundation.
This event has achieved a sort of notoriety, which has extended to the
book itself as well. All published editions of
GURPS Cyberpunk have a
tagline on the front cover, which reads "The book that was seized by
the U.S. Secret Service!" Inside, the book provides a summary of the
raid and its aftermath.
Cyberpunk has also inspired several tabletop, miniature and board
games such as
Necromunda by Games Workshop.
Netrunner is a collectible
card game introduced in 1996, based on the
Cyberpunk 2020 role-playing
Tokyo NOVA, debuting in 1993, is a cyberpunk role-playing game
that uses playing cards instead of dice.
List of cyberpunk works § Music
"Much of the industrial/dance heavy 'Cyberpunk'—recorded in Billy
Idol's Macintosh-run studio—revolves around Idol's theme of the
common man rising up to fight against a faceless, soulless, corporate
Some musicians and acts have been classified as cyberpunk due to their
aesthetic style and musical content. Often dealing with dystopian
visions of the future or biomechanical themes, some fit more squarely
in the category than others. Bands whose music has been classified as
cyberpunk include Psydoll, Front Line Assembly,
Clock DVA and Sigue
Sigue Sputnik. Some musicians not normally associated with cyberpunk
have at times been inspired to create concept albums exploring such
themes. Albums such as Gary Numan's Replicas, The Pleasure Principle
Telekon were heavily inspired by the works of Philip K. Dick.
The Man-Machine and
Computer World albums both explored
the theme of humanity becoming dependent on technology. Nine Inch
Nails' concept album Year Zero also fits into this category. Fear
Factory concept albums are heavily based upon future dystopia,
cybernetics, clash between man and machines, virtual worlds. Billy
Cyberpunk drew heavily from cyberpunk literature and the
cyberdelic counter culture in its creation. 1. Outside, a cyberpunk
narrative fueled concept album by David Bowie, was warmly met by
critics upon its release in 1995. Many musicians have also taken
inspiration from specific cyberpunk works or authors, including Sonic
Youth, whose albums Sister and
Daydream Nation take influence from the
Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick and
William Gibson respectively.
Vaporwave and Synthwave are also influenced by cyberpunk. The former
has been interpreted as a dystopian critique of capitalism in
the vein of cyberpunk and the latter as a nostalgic retrofuturistic
revival of aspects of cyberpunk's origins.
Art and architecture
Berlin's Sony Center
Neo-Futurism artworks and cityscapes have been influenced by
cyberpunk, such as  the
Sony Center in the
Potsdamer Platz public
square of Berlin, Germany.
Society and counterculture
Several subcultures have been inspired by cyberpunk fiction. These
include the cyberdelic counter culture of the late 1980s and early
90s. Cyberdelic, whose adherents referred to themselves as
"cyberpunks", attempted to blend the psychedelic art and drug movement
with the technology of cyberculture. Early adherents included Timothy
Mark Frauenfelder and R. U. Sirius. The movement largely faded
following the dot-com bubble implosion of 2000.
Cybergoth is a fashion and dance subculture which draws its
inspiration from cyberpunk fiction, as well as rave and Gothic
subcultures. In addition, a distinct cyberpunk fashion of its own has
emerged in recent years[when?] which rejects the raver and goth
influences of cybergoth, and draws inspiration from urban street
fashion, "post apocalypse", functional clothing, high tech sports
wear, tactical uniform and multifunction. This fashion goes by names
like "tech wear", "goth ninja" or "tech ninja". Important designers in
this type of fashion[according to whom?] are ACRONYM, Demobaza,
Boris Bidjan Saberi,
Rick Owens and Alexander Wang.
Kowloon Walled City
Kowloon Walled City in
Hong Kong (demolished in 1994) is often
referenced as the model cyberpunk/dystopian slum as, given its poor
living conditions at the time coupled by the city's political,
physical, and economic isolation has caused many in academia to be
fascinated by the ingenuity of its spawning.
As a wider variety of writers began to work with cyberpunk concepts,
new subgenres of science fiction emerged, some of which could be
considered as playing off the cyberpunk label, others which could be
considered as legitimate explorations into newer territory. These
focused on technology and its social effects in different ways. One
prominent subgenre is "steampunk," which is set in an alternate
Victorian era that combines anachronistic technology with
cyberpunk's bleak film noir world view. The term was originally coined
around 1987 as a joke to describe some of the novels of Tim Powers,
James P. Blaylock, and K.W. Jeter, but by the time Gibson and Sterling
entered the subgenre with their collaborative novel The Difference
Engine the term was being used earnestly as well.
Another subgenre is "biopunk" (cyberpunk themes dominated by
biotechnology) from the early 1990s, a derivative style building on
biotechnology rather than informational technology. In these stories,
people are changed in some way not by mechanical means, but by genetic
Paul Di Filippo
Paul Di Filippo is seen as the most prominent biopunk
writer, including his half-serious ribofunk. Bruce Sterling's
Shaper/Mechanist cycle is also seen as a major influence. In addition,
some people consider works such as Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age
to be postcyberpunk.
Cyberpunk works have been described as well-situated within postmodern
Role playing game publisher R. Talsorian Games, owner of the Cyberpunk
2020 franchise, trademarked the word "Cyberpunk" in the United States
Video game developer CD Projekt, which is developing
Cyberpunk 2077, bought the U.S. trademark from R. Talsorian Games, and
has filed a trademark in the European Union.
Speculative fiction portal
Utopian and dystopian fiction
^ Ketterer, David (1992). Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy.
Indiana University Press. p. 141. ISBN 0-253-33122-6.
^ Hassler, Donald M. (2008). New Boundaries in Political Science
Fiction. University of South Carolina Press. pp. 75–76.
^ a b "CTheory.net". CTheory.net. Retrieved 2009-03-20.
^ a b "DVD Verdict Review – New Rose Hotel". Dvdverdict.com.
2000-01-10. Archived from the original on 2008-12-28. Retrieved
^ a b "'New Rose Hotel': Corporate Intrigue, Steamy Seduction".
Nytimes.com. 1999-10-01. Retrieved 2009-03-20.
^ a b Person, Lawrence (October 8, 1999). "Notes Toward a
Postcyberpunk Manifesto". Slashdot. Originally published in Nova
Express, issue 16 (1998).
^ a b Graham, Stephen (2004). The Cybercities Reader. Routledge.
p. 389. ISBN 0-415-27956-9.
^ Gibson, William from Burning Chrome published in 1981
^ Gillis, Stacy (2005). The Matrix Trilogy:
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^ ‘NEW WORLDS': ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL SCI-FI MAGAZINES RETURNS
Ballard’s think-pieces on the intrusion of technology and media —
"The Atrocity Exhibition", "Notes Towards a Mental Breakdown", "The
Assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy Considered as a Downhill
Motor Race" (collected with others as The Atrocity Exhibition with
illustrations by Phoebe Gloeckner) — paved the way for cyberpunk.
Brian Aldiss practically populated his own subgenre with quirky epics
like Acid Head War, a messianic tale of freestyle narrative set in a
post-war Europe in which hallucinogenic drugs had affected entire
populations, and Report on Probability A, an experimental story about
the observations of three characters named G, S, and C.
Steampunk and Wizardry: Science Fiction Since 1980
Chapter 4. The New Wave
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^ a b Redmond, Sean (2004). Liquid Metal: The Science Fiction Film
Reader. Wallflower Press. pp. 101–112.
^ Sahr Johnny, "Cybercity - Sahr Johnny's
Shanghai Dream" That's
Shanghai, October 2005; quoted online by .
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Routledge, p. 107, ISBN 978-0-415-07776-7, retrieved July
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Columbia University Press. p. 34. ISBN 0-231-11331-5.
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alt.cyberpunk Usenet group)
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No. 4; November 1983 Link
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(1984)" Washington State University
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^ CYBERPUNK - Trademark Details - Justia
^ CYBERPUNK - European Union Intellectual Property Office
^ The Witcher studio assuages concerns over ‘Cyberpunk’ trademark
- Allegra Frank, Polygon, 6 April 2017
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