By J. M. van der Laan (auth.)
This publication records and investigates the tales we've got informed and proceed to inform approximately technology-now the dominant characteristic of our civilization-in fiction, non-fiction, movie, and ads. It solutions very important questions on the meanings humans ascribe to expertise, the hopes and fears we convey within the diverse narratives, the impact of these narratives upon us, and the hot kinds of fantasy these narratives signify. Narratives of Technology bargains an technique grounded within the humanities, including one other point of view to that of social scientists and technologists.
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Additional info for Narratives of Technology
And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar. They said, ‘Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name’” (verses 3–4). M. VAN DER LAAN monumental—a city. The Lord, we read, in verse 5 “came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. The Lord said, ‘Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them’” (NASV, verses 5–6).
Which of these narratives will be authoritative; which considered valid, legitimate, true, authentic, and acceptable; and which invalid, illegitimate, untrue, inauthentic, and unacceptable? Which of these stories can serve to help us best understand the new universe of technology, define a social order within it, and determine how to live in its circumstances? Among others, Alex Goody, Katherine Hayles, Thomas Hughes, David Nye, Howard Segal, Herbert Sussman, and Wylie Sypher have done much to trace the outlines and contents of the narratives about technology.
If we extend the idea of myth to the stories we tell about technology, we find that they, too, express and inform our beliefs, attitudes, morals, and behavior. In the analysis and interpretation of our narratives about technology, we consequently encounter and discover expressions of our ideologies and basic convictions, especially those which are, so to speak, “hidden” in those stories. Murray understood, NARRATIVE AND MYTH 37 myths are simple or compound narrative units, many of which, carried in the mind, have had extraordinary permanence and potency, inasmuch as generations of people have been disposed to live—feel, think, and act—to a considerable extent in these terms, and hence that knowledge of the myths of any given society should enable us … to explain many of the otherwise unintelligible conceptions, emotional reactions, and modes of behavior of its members.
Narratives of Technology by J. M. van der Laan (auth.)