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  1. 1. Ghost in the Shell:Technology and ProtestFred Bailey:(PowerPoint/Video/Storyline/Characters/Themes) Dairee Hart: (Animation/Cultural Research) Haneen Kurd: (Cultural Research)
  2. 2. Introduction to Film andOriginal Source Ghost in the Shell is a 1995 Japanese animated film directed by Mamoru Oshii. It is based on the manga of the same name by Masamune Shirow.
  3. 3. StorylineGhost in the Shell follows the investigation of the elusive hackerknown as the Puppet Master by Section 9s Major MokotoKusanagi and her subordinate, Batou. In this film, technology hasgotten so far that cyborgs exist and peoples consciousness, orghosts, can be hacked (their actions, and even memories, canbe controlled and manipulated by hackers). After someinvestigation is made, a robot is found by Section 9 with thePuppet Masters ghost inside. It is revealed that the PuppetMaster was originally created by the Japanese government toaffect world politics, but it developed self-awareness and wentrogue. The robot escapes from Section 9 and chase through thecity ensues. Kusanagi eventually catches up to the PuppetMaster and has a very revealing conversation concerning hismotivations. The Puppet Master is sentient like humans, butcannot die or reproduce like they can. The Puppet Master wantsto amend this by fusing his consciousness with Kusanagis,allowing him to die and produce a kind of hybrid offspring. Thegovernment officials catch up with them, however, and end upkilling both Kusanagi and the Puppet Master before it seems liketheyve fused. In the next scene, however, it is revealed that theirfusion was successful and the new entity has been put into a
  4. 4. Characters-MajorMotoko KusanagiThe protagonist of the movie, MajorKusanagi is a cyborg who works forPublic Security Section 9 (a sort ofcybernetic police) and is given thetask of investigating the PuppetMaster. Throughout the film,Kusanagi struggles and broods overthe fact that she is mostly made ofrobot parts and is not sure if anythinghuman is left in her, or if everythingabout her, even her memories, aresynthetic. At the end of the film it isrevealed that she did merge her
  5. 5. Characters-Batou Batou is Kusanagis second-in-command at Section 9. He is verybrusque in manner, but ends upbeing a very loyal subordinate andfriend to Kusanagi
  6. 6. Characters- The Puppet Master The Puppet Master serves as the main antagonistof the film. Originally known as Project 2501, thePuppet Master is the result of the Japanesegovernment trying to create an artificialintelligence that could covertly manipulate politicsand the minds of its citizens. The Puppet Masterbecomes sentient, however, and startsperpetrating the crimes seen in the film. As it turnsout, the Puppet Masters ultimate goal is to fuseitself with anothers consciousness to form a newentity much in the same way biological organismsdo with their genes. He ends up accomplishing hisgoal through Major Kusanagi. It is also interestingto note that the Puppet Master has a very
  7. 7. Video Clip In this video clip the Puppet Master makeshis first appearance, and makes some ofhis philosophies and motives known.
  8. 8. Technical Aspectsof Animation Ghost in the Shell is actuallygroundbreaking in the factthat it is the first film to everblend traditional celanimation and computergenerated graphics in itsproduction. Most of the film uses a dark, subdued color palate. This adds to the films dark themes and tone.
  9. 9. CulturalUnderstanding Anime is produced with a Japanese audiencesolely in mind, and thus, many of the themesand imagery presented in anime are not fullyunderstood by Western Audiences. The Japanese have a much less black-and-white view of morality in the universe than theWest, and this is reflected in theirentertainment. Characters often sit in moralgrey areas, and the good cause does notalways win. In Ghost in the Shell, forexample, it is hard to pick out any purelygood or purely evil characters. Also, the mainantagonist of the film, the Puppet Master,ends up getting what it wants in the end,
  10. 10. CulturalUnderstanding (cont.) Also, unlike Western animation, anime isnot usually targeted towards children, butrather to teens and adults: Nudity, extremeviolence, and other adult themes areextremely common in Japaneseanimation; this can be seen in Ghost in theShell. This is just the surface of the culturalimagery and themes explored in Ghost in
  11. 11. Major Themes The major theme addressed by Ghost in theShell is the relationship between a humansconsciousness, or ghost, and their physical form.Within the films fiction, a human is different from arobot only if they possess a ghost, this idea ischallenged within the film, however. Kusanagi isconstantly reflecting on the fact that she is acyborg and that her identity and all her memoriescould all just be simulated. Alternatively, thePuppet Master, is an artificial intelligence that hasgained consciousness and is trying to practicemore processes associated with being human(death and reproduction). The films majorquestion and major theme really is: What defineshuman consciousness and is something artificialreally capable of replicating that? Interestingly, his
  12. 12. Major Themes (cont.) The films other major theme is how the evergrowing role of technology in our day to day livesis affecting our privacy as individuals. In the futurethis film presents, peoples minds and memoriescan be hacked and controlled through neuraluplinks to the internet. This idea was beingexploited by the government in the film (thecreation of the Puppet Master), and is a majorissue today. As we upload more and more of ourdaily lives to the internet and become more andmore dependent upon technology foraccomplishing every day tasks in our world, arewe sacrificing our privacy and individualism? Iftechnology ever gets to the point it does in thisfilm, can we trust our government or other corruptto not alter and manipulate our experience for their
  13. 13. Conclusion Ghost in the Shell is an anime film that explores the ever increasing role of technology in our society and the consequences that could come with it. In a world where almost everything is artificial, how can one ever know whats truly real? How can one protect their privacy in a world where our lives are increasingly lived out through the internet? Can we trust so much information and power to individuals that may be corrupt? Ghost in the Shell asks a lot questions that we may be finding the answers to in the coming decades.
  14. 14. Sources Herbert, Jack. The anime that spawned The Matrix. Wa-Pedia. Ghost in the Shell. Wikipedia. Anime Culture Explained in 10 minutes or Less. Motoko Kusanagi. Wikipedia. Puppet Master (Ghost in the Shell) Wikipedia. Mind-Body Problem. The Information Philosopher. Solove, Daniel. The digital person: Technology and privacy in theinformation age. Vol. 1. NYU Press, 2004.
  15. 15. Sources (cont.) History. Anime Saikai. Thompson, K. M. 2011. Classical Cel Animation, WorldWar II, and Bambi. The Wiley-Blackwell History ofAmerican Film. Marks, Jessica. Introduction into Ghost in the ShellHistorical World, as Well as Some Details Concerningthe Plot and Characters. Permanent Socialism. 2011.