Bone Dance

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Bull, Emma. Bone Dance. New York: Ace, 1991.

Discussed by Claire Sponsler in "Beyond the Ruins: The Geopolitics of Urban Decay and Cybernetic Play," q.v.[1]

In Bone Dance, as in many cyberpunk stories, physical space [although the protagonist and others on the edge move freely in it] is [...] ultimately less important than mental space. Like the cyberspace of Gibson's works or Sterling's "net," this mental space counters, and represents an evasion of, the ruined physical world. Sparrow, we learn, is a cheval, a neutered human deliberately constructed to survive the war that has taken place before the novel opens and provide a bodily shell for Voodoo Horsemen to inhabit. At the end of the story, in a mental battle of two minds within one body that privileges interior mental space over exterior physical environment, s/he must fight off a Horseman who wishes to possess the body Sparrow now inhabits. In this mental battle it is made abundantly clear that whatever impact the external environment has on human life, it pales in comparison with the significance of interior space. Mind matters much more than body here. (p. 259)

Usefully contextualized in "Women's Cyberfiction: An Introduction," pp. 30-31, with other works combining "technology, magic, and spiritualism."



RDE, completing, 26May19