The Real World of Technology

(CBC Massey lecture series)

Paperback, 209 pages

English language

Published Jan. 4, 1999 by Anansi.


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4 stars (4 reviews)

In this expanded edition of her bestselling 1989 CBC Massey Lectures, renowned scientist and humanitarian Ursula M. Franklin examines the impact of technology upon our lives and addresses the extraordinary changes since The Real World of Technology was first published.

In four new chapters, Franklin tackles contentious issues, such as the dilution of privacy and intellectual property rights, the impact of the current technology on government and governance, the shift from consumer capitalism to investment capitalism, and the influence of the Internet upon the craft of writing.

3 editions

very insightful in a short space

4 stars

Impressive set of lectures on the societal implications of technology - broadly, from ancient metalworking to sewing machines to electrification to military industrial arms - from a feminist pacifist horizontalist perspective. Franklin highlights ways in which technical choices obscure moving from holistically artisan to hierarchical control, from biological growth and uncertainty to manufacturing's obliviousness to context, and the false claims of liberation or ease from the introduction of new tech which turns to exploitation and makes us dependent on industrial supply and control.

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  • Technology -- Social aspects.