November 30, 2010

Technologies as cultural practice and production (Pursell)

Technology is performative.
Three aspects of cultural history that can be applied when studying history of technology:
  1. Main task of cultural history is the deciphering of meaning, rather than discovering causal laws.
  2. The use of language as metaphor should be taken seriously.  Take note of how words are used, e.g. the changing use and meaning of the word 'technology.'
  3. Terms like race, class, gender, etc. are not fixed and immutable categories.  They are things that "happen in human relationships." [E.P.Thompson]
C.W. Pursell

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