Study Guide

Star Trek: The Motion Picture Technology and Modernization

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Technology and Modernization

So there's this theory that someday mankind will fuse with technology and become one species. This theoretical event, known as the "singularity," is at the core of Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

Once an unmanned probe launched from a humble planet called Earth, V'Ger was rescued from the brink of death by sentient machines and sent off to complete its mission: reunite with the Creator. It just didn't expect the Creator to be people.

Though it meets this revelation with disappointment, V'Ger ends up receiving a gift beyond its wildest expectations when it finally merges with the Creator and gains a wholly new, wholly human aspect to itself.

Questions About Technology and Modernization

  1. Does the end of the movie depict the "singularity?" Explain your answer.
  2. What might V'Ger's character say about technology in modern society?
  3. How does your understanding of V'Ger change once you realize that it is a machine? Does this make it more or less sympathetic?
  4. How does the visual design of V'Ger relate to the theme of technology?

Chew on This

The end of Star Trek depicts the singularity because we witness humanity merging with technology to create a seamless, wholly new type of being.

Star Trek comments on modern technology by arguing that, if less unchecked, technology will make us less human.

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