Technology and the Social World 6

Modernity and Technology

Mastery and control means an impulse to totalization, as well. White men have tried to interpret the world in a single manner, and the tools for that interpretation has been technology.

This is a function of the Enlightenment, when the ideal was the reasonable man, able to control his impulses as well as his world, and able to meet his desires in the most efficient manner possible. So, what is the world according to white men's technology?

a)
It is rational. It is there to be understood, and in principle it can be understood.

b) The mark of whether it has been understood is whether it can be manipulated or controlled, or at least predicted. This means that
method becomes important, because method is a rigorous, regular means of manipulating or controlling. So, technology is an outworking of rationality and the belief in control. But there is another implication here: the goals are also the result of rational decision. So, we can know what we ought to do through technology, as well as how we ought to do it.

c)
The more thoroughly the world is controlled, the better evidence of our reason. So, there is a proliferation of technology. Even in places you did not realize you needed a regularized method, we can make one for you. Implication: More technology is better.

d) It is not enough for you to control the world.
Fewer & fewer men need to control more & more. So, complex technology is better, especially if it gives the impression of ease of use.

e)
This technology will solve all our problems. It is emancipatory. Implication: our problems are outside us, inhibiting our innate rationality from showing itself. Get rid of those external problems, and what is left is good.