Technology and the Rest of Culture

Edited by Arien Mack

From the printing press to Palm Pilots, we often rush to embrace new inventions that promise to make life easier. Yet the history of modern warfare suggests that new technologies can also have drastic and dire consequences. Technology and the Rest of Culture explores this tension by identifying the many ways in which technology shapes our society, investigating whether culture has an impact on the rate and direction of technological achievement, and describing how technology seems to have taken on a life and culture of its own.

Nicholas Humphrey, Marvin Minsky, Peter Galison, and Joshua Lederberg explore the complex relationship between science and technology, showing that scientific advancement has often followed technological achievements, rather than the other way around. Ira Katznelson, Alan Ryan, Paul Gewirtz, and Robert McC. Adams consider how shifts in the means and terms of communication affect democracy, free expression, and the law. Rosalind Williams, George Kateb, John Hollander, and Robert L. Herbert challenge the notion that technological images and themes express primarily logic, utility, functionality, and rationality, asserting instead that violent, aggressive, and destructive images are all too often the end result of technology.

At times somber, at times playful, but always challenging and thought-provoking, Technology and the Rest of Culture culls many academic disciplines to discover important elements about one of the most central characteristics of life in the twenty-first century.

Arien Mack is Marrow Professor of Psychology at the New School University and the editor of Social Research. She is also the editor of Humans and Other Animals (Ohio State University Press).

Jul 2001
History/Political science/Philosophy
398 pp. 6 x 9 7 photographs

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