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SOSC 1000 - Culture & Technology (Comprehensive)

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Social Science
SOSC 1000
Terry Conlin

2001: A Space Odyssey  Utopian visions of a high tech future  Bone smashing = technologies of control  Technology as a symbol of a higher order 30 Years at York: A Rant Show up to lecture! This is something you don’t want to miss! What was once freedom is now enslavement … Cars are the “mechanical brides” of the western world, but recently there has been a shift in who is controlling who … (At this point Prof. Conlin tells a personal anecdote which I will not share, simply because it’s not my story and I won’t recite it as well) Over the course of his years, Prof. Conlin analogizes the powers of control technology through his parallel with faculty doors being closed at YorkU. In the past, all office doors would be open and you could, if they were not busy, talk with their occupants. Now, with the ability to work from home thanks to the computer and the internet, most doors are closed. The point being that technology today has a grip on the western world unlike never before that has disassociated us from ourselves. Ursula Franklin Of the recent century, there is a dominance of “prescriptive” technologies… Definition: Prescriptive technologies organize work as a sequence of steps that require administrative control by management. (Factory) Importance: Exceedingly effective, but social consequence. Franklin argues that the dominance of prescriptive technologies in modern society discourages critical thinking and promotes "a culture of compliance" in which there is only one way of doing things. This culture of compliance allows masses to be controlled, revealing an underlying class control & Enforced Orthodoxy. …And a removal of “holistic” technologies Definition: Holistic technology is most easily understood in terms of the work done by artisans. Essentially, the user is in control of the entire process, from beginning to end. (Woodshop) Importance: These technologies have no social cost on the individual using them Gendered Technologies Some technologies have been associated with certain genders because of the work they are correlated to. For example, tools an auto mechanic may use tools that are generally associated to males, and cooking instruments are generally attributed to females. This is because, at some point most mechanics were males, and most women cooked for their families. Technology: Work vs. Control 2 Kinds of Technology Work related (Good) Definition: Taking practice of work and making it easier Control related (Bad) Definition: Increasing control of these technologies Work Related Control Related Holistic (Pg. 16) Prescri
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