When a Robot Can Love – Blade Runner as a Cautionary Tale on Law and Technology

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This paper examines Ridley Scot’s 1982 film Blade Runner as a cautionary tale relating to the role of law in a technology augmented environment. Blade Runner presents a regime that uses law first in order to create beings with superior abilities and pre-determined longevity, and then to define them as non-human or non-beings, devoid of legal personhood, and thus exploitable. Blade Runner, alongside other cultural representations created within the science fiction genre, serves as illustration of a society that brings together technology and law, in order to maintain unaccountable and arbitrary employment of authorized power. It provides a warning against uninhibited use of technology in order to crate genetic inferiority, and calls for careful scrutiny of the overt and covert functions of law, as new technologies gradually become available.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIus Gentium
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media B.V.
Number of pages14
StatePublished - 2013

Publication series

NameIus Gentium
ISSN (Electronic)2214-9902

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2013, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.


  • Artificial Creation
  • Cautionary Tale
  • Legal Personhood
  • Science Fiction
  • Social Meaning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law


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