“The ubiquity and invisibility of cyborgs is precisely why these sunshine-belt machines are so deadly. They are as hard to see politically as materially. They are about consciousness - or its simulation.5 They are floating signifiers moving in pickup trucks across Europe, blocked more effectively by the witch-weavings of the displaced and so unnatural Greenham women, who read the cyborg webs of power so very well, than by the militant labour of older masculinist politics, whose natural constituency needs defence jobs. Ultimately the 'hardest' science is about the realm of greatest boundary confusion, the realm of pure number, pure spirit, C3I, cryptography, and the preservation of potent secrets. The new machines are so clean and light. Their engineers are sun-worshippers mediating a new scientific revolution associated with the night dream of post-industrial society. (4-5)”
Of course, a cyborg in a more traditional sense is a part artificial human or vise versa, but in this paper I think we’re to take it to mean a woman, not an ordinary woman, but a woman who either doesn’t care about women’s rights movement or is entirely ignorant of it. I take sunshine belt machines to mean women who live in third world or more notably Arab countries that exist only to serve men by not being able to show their faces in public and not being allowed to speak at certain times and so on. Greenham women are a group of women that gathered and protested the storage of nuclear material in Greenham, UK.
So what the first couple sentences are saying is the omnipresence of women make it hard to really notice them but they pretend like they care or know about the women’s movement and that is what is hurting women’s rights. This effect is then magnified by the Greenham women, who draw attention away from the problem of all of the cyborg women and onto themselves because they know how to work the system. Because the Greenham women have drawn all the attention to themselves, none can be devoted to attacking the masculinists.
This passage talks about hindering progress the movement has made towards equality by using various techniques for example C3I (command control-communication-intelligence) and it must be working well since “ the new machines are clean and light.” Calling their engineers sun-worshipers means that their creators are man worshipers because the sun deity is usually thought of as being male and the purpose of their new machines are to further society.
This paper is difficult because it makes a detailed analogy of the cyborg and woman. It does so by using complex phrase to paint that detailed picture that may not be achievable otherwise, or at least it wouldn’t be as effective.