Philosophy of Technology

Frederick Ferré

Reviews

"This is a wonderful introduction to the philosophy of technology—and indeed, to the understanding of philosophy itself, as well as to the study of the meaning, purpose, and results of technological changes. Ferré demonstrates that philosophy/technology relationships are constantly changing—and he makes this into a lively field which will continue to stimulate thought."
—Melvin Kranzberg, Georgia Institute of Technology

"An able introduction for beginning students who exemplify in the context of their own lives . . . the need for the philosophy of technology. . . . Ferré raises more questions than gives answers, gently but unmistakably prompting both teacher and student to expand the horizon in inquiry into the questions concerning technology."
Contemporary Philosophy


"This book provides reflective background for the informed development of a philosophy of technology education. This in turn can help us move from the technological transformation of education toward the educational transformation of technology."
Journal of Educational Technology

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Description
In this widely taught introductory survey, Frederick Ferré explains the fundamental concerns and methods of philosophy and then guides readers through a philosophical inquiry into some of the major issues surrounding technology's impact on our lives.

The first half of the book concentrates on key definitions and epistemological issues, including an overview of philosophy as applied to technology, a definition of technology, and an examination of technology as it relates to practical and theoretical intelligence--especially how high technology relates to modern science and how science depends on technical craft. The second half addresses the problems of living with technology. Ferré contrasts Karl Marx's and Buckminster Fuller's "bright" visions of technology and modern existence with the "somber" visions of Martin Heidegger and Herbert Marcuse. Next, in offering direction for an ethical assessment of technology, Ferré poses questions about workplace automation, computers, nuclear energy, Third World development, and genetic engineering. Finally, the book considers debates about the mutual influences between technology and religion, and technology and metaphysics. A glossary and a list of suggested further readings are included.

Providing a philosophical framework that will remain timely in the face of rapid technological change, Philosophy of Technology will help students in both the sciences and liberal arts to examine comprehensively their own and society's fundamental beliefs and attitudes about technology.

Page count: 168 pp.
Trim size: 6 x 9

 



Paper
List price: $23.95
978-0-8203-1761-8
1995

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Frederick Ferré is Research Professor of Philosophy at the University of Georgia. His many books include Ethics and Environmental Policy: Theory meets Practice (Georgia), which he coedited with Peter Hartel, and Hellfire and Lightning Rods: Liberating Science, Technology, and Religion.