Eidolon

Beverley Hood, Marina Warner, Nicola White

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract

Eidolon is an interdisciplinary performance that aims to explore the relationship between the body and technology, as well as the effects that technology has on our perception of what it means to be human. Developed at the Scottish Centre for Simulation & Clinical Human Factors (SCSCHF) at the Forth Valley Royal Hospital, Larbert, Eidolon is supported by a Wellcome Trust Arts Award, Creative Scotland and The University of Edinburgh. The project began in 2013 as a series of observation visits to the simulation centre, and was developed and broadened through collaborative performance workshops with actors Pauline Goldsmith and Stanley Pattison, dancer Freya Jeffs and dramaturg Jeremy Weller, as well as the ongoing input of the simulation centre staff. Eidolon evolved into an intimate site-specific, immersive live performance, which is comprised of a series of interwoven vignettes, and is presented within medical simulation centres that mimic clinical hospital locations, such as operating theatres and hospital wards. The performance brings the general public into a unique space within the NHS, opening up a window into a world of high level technology, and into an area that is normally only accessible to medical professionals. Eidolon explores the emotive and psychological potential of these spaces, and the patient simulator manikins found within them. The manikins are technological bodies that have been embodied with human physical responses such as voice, pulse, breath and tears that are used for teaching and learning purposes. The combination of immersive simulated environment and responsive patient simulator manikins, create a unique situation, with the potential to foster what the medical world describe as, psychological fidelity, i.e. where participants feel part of the event and have experiences that correspond with, and can be transferred to the real-world. Eidolon aims to embrace and bring to life the challenges these manikins,being, literally, physical bodies and physiologically real and responsive (yet technologically-driven), have on our perception of what it means to be human and embodied. How many physical indicators are required to create the sense of a present physiological body (such as placing a hand over the mouth of a manikin and feeling its breath)? What constitutes a real, authentic and meaningful experience within a simulated environment? Eidolon echoes, yet at the same time disrupts, the everyday activities of the simulation centre. This disruption triggers the appearance of empathetic, emotional, ambiguous, and, at times, uncomfortably human, fissures, within the typical clinical simulation scenarios. Eidolon unsettles the ethical boundaries and relationship between medical practitioner and patient, or patient manikin, and hints at the possibility of latent physical, psychological and emotional realms within human-like bodies.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherBeverley Hood
Number of pages80
ISBN (Print)978-1-5262-0490-5
Publication statusPublished - 12 Aug 2016

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  • Eidolon

    Hood, B.

    1/10/1315/09/17

    Project: University Awarded Project Funding

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