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Breakdown: Mechanical Dysfunction and Anthropomorphism

My thesis begins by investigating the performative relationship of Breakdown in detail. It describes a machine-human body that is materialised fleetingly by mechanical dysfunction. Through an intimate relationship with one machine, it then goes on to identify a typology of breakdown: seize, play, burnout and cutting loose, concluding that each emits differing expanding and contracting forces around which bodies disperse and coalesce. Finally, employing the flicker of a thaumatrope and the making of the science fiction film robot, the thesis posits that anthropomorphism is an integral element in the dissipation and reformation of human-machine bodies.

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