[Air-L] Technology as ideologically neutral?

Anna Croon Fors acroon at informatik.umu.se
Thu Jul 5 15:54:38 PDT 2012


Don Ihde's work from 1990, Technology and the lifeworld might also add to all the good suggestions already posted on  your request. Also, the work of David Nye, Lucas Introna, Michael Heim & Albert Borgmann to mention a few others. Finally, as always if you ask me Martin Heidegger and his The Question concerning Technology and other Essays and Herbert Marcuse's One Dimensional Man. There is hardly anymore seminal than that.


On Jul 5, 2012, at 3:48 PM, Charles Ess wrote:

> Dear AoIRists,
> I'm trying to gather both accessible and, to some degree, "landmark" or
> foundational literature that can be used to (gently) challenge a view I keep
> encountering in certain circles lately - namely, that technology in general
> and the Internet in particular is "ideologically neutral".
> Such a view was around in the U.S. in the early days of the Internet - but
> countered in at least two ways; those who took up Social Construction of
> Technology and related theory from ST studies, including discussion of
> "affordances", etc. - and then the very ideological claims (roughly:
> California libertarian technological utopianism) that went from claims such
> as "the internet interprets censorship as damage, and routes around it" to
> claims that the Internet embedded and fostered specially U.S. (neoliberal)
> values of individualism, freedom of expression, and free market capitalism.
> For better and for worse, however, my impression is that in our communities,
> at least, the recognition that the technologies embed and foster specific
> cultural values and communicative preferences (as I like to put it on the
> basis of the CATaC conferences) has been more or less a given for quite some
> time.  Hence, having to re-visit and re-establish these understandings for
> those for whom this recognition is apparently quite new is a bit of a
> challenge.
> Any suggestions for literature, etc., would be most appreciated.
> Many thanks in advance,
> - charles ess
> -- 
> Until August 31, 2012: Professor MSO
> Media Studies, Institute for Aesthetics and Communication
> Aarhus University
> Helsingforsgade 14 
> 8200 Aarhus
> Denmark
> From 1. Sept. 2012: Associate Professor in Media Studies
> Department of Media and Communication
> Forskningsparken II
> Gaustadalléen 21 
> 0349  Oslo  Norway
> Lifetime member, AoIR
> “At vove er at miste fodfæstet for en stund, ikke at vove er at miste
> sig selv” [To dare is to lose your footing for an hour; not to dare is to
> lose yourself] - Kierkegaard
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