For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

References for Theme: Technology

  • Acemoglu, Daron
  • Acemoglu, Daron; Restrepo, Pascual
  • Balsmeier, Benjamin; Woerter, Martin
  • Bernasconi, Robert
  • Blok, V
  • Borgmann, Albert
    • Technology and the Character of Contemporary Life: A Philosophical Inquiry (1987)
      (p.199) When Heidegger described the focusing power of the jug, he might have been thinking of a  rural setting where wine jugs embody in their material, form, and craft a long and local tradition; where at noon one goes down to the cellar to draw a jug of table wine whose vintage one knows well; where at the noon meal the wine is thoughtfully poured and gratefully received. Under such circumstances, there might be a gathering and disclosure of the fourfold, one that is for the most part understood and in the background and may come to the fore on festive...
    • Technology and the Character of Contemporary Life: A Philosophical Inquiry (1987)
      (p.3) The advanced technological way of life is usually seen as rich in styles and opportunities, pregnant with radical innovations, and open to a  promising future. The problems that beset technological societies are thought to be extrinsic to technology; they stem, supposedly, from political indecision, social injustice, or environmental constraints. I consider this a  serious mis-reading of our situation. I propose to show that there is a  characteristic and constraining pattern to the entire fabric of our lives. This pattern is visible first and most of all in the countless inconspicuous objects and procedures of daily life in a technological society....
    • Technology and the Character of Contemporary Life: A Philosophical Inquiry (1987)
    • "Technology" (2005)
      (p.420) It can be argued that technology is the most important topic of Heidegger's thought.
    • "Technology" (2005)
  • Coeckelbergh, Mark
  • Dabbous, Amal; Barakat, Karine Aoun; Sayegh, May Merhej
  • Dias, W P
    • "Heidegger's Relevance for Engineering: questioning technology" (2003)
      (p.392) Given the pervasive and significant impact of technology on our lives and society, it would do well for engineers too to engage in such questioning as an integral part of their practice, since they are agents of technology. This would also result in more balanced critiques of technology. Currently critics of technology tend to be largely philosophers or environmentalist, both of whom are sometimes unrealistic in their rejection of technology.
    • "Heidegger's Relevance for Engineering: questioning technology" (2003)
      (p.394) Questioning technology in practice is not an easy task. Not only does it involve areas such as socially acceptable levels of risk, but also issues of justice and values. There is also the need for a shared discourse and consensus, which is increasingly difficult to find today. While the treatment of these subjects is very brief here, the intention has been to argue that engineers should be part and parcel of this questioning process. As Heidegger remarked, “Questioning is the piety of thought”.
    • "Heidegger's Relevance for Engineering: questioning technology" (2003)
      (p.396) Heidegger’s early writings stressed the primacy of practice over theory, and hence can be interpreted as supportive of the engineering approach. In his later writings he affirmed traditional technology, but was opposed to science based modern technology, in which everything (including man) is considered to be a mere “resource”. This spirit of questioning is something that engineers (who are purveyors of technology) would do well to emulate. Just as Heidegger considered poetry to be an antidote to the spirit of modern technology, the use of metaphor in design could also liberate engineering from its sometimes narrow rationalism.
    • "Heidegger's Relevance for Engineering: questioning technology" (2003)
  • Dreyfus, Hubert L
    • "Between Technē and Technology: The Ambiguous Place of Equipment in Being and Time" (1984)
      (p.25) Heidegger, however, never works out a history of the being of equipment, so we will have to construct it from hints. The most important of these hints are Heidegger's discussion of the Greek notion of techne at the beginning of our history and his remark in "Science and Reflection" that, in the technological understanding of the being, subject and object no longer stand in a relation of representation but are both absorbed into a total systematic ordering. ("Both subject and object are sucked up as standing-reserve.") (QCT.173). It follows that opposing the Cartesian subject/object distinction in terms of an account...
    • "Between Technē and Technology: The Ambiguous Place of Equipment in Being and Time" (1984)
      (p.32) The idea that in the technological world equipment more and more comes to fit together in one single totality is already a step from the relatively autonomous and autochthonous workshop of the craftsman towards the uprooted interconnectedness of industrial mass production. Its final achievement would be a world system under the feedback control of cybernetics. Heidegger makes a similar point in The Question Concering Technology, when he criticizes Hegel's definition of the machine as an autonomous tool and contrasts the autonomous tools of the craftsman with the total ordering characteristic of the technological machine
    • "Between Technē and Technology: The Ambiguous Place of Equipment in Being and Time" (1984)
  • Dreyfus, Hubert L; Spinosa, Charles
    • "Further Reflections on Heidegger, Technology, and the Everyday" (2003)
      (p.339) In writing about technology, Heidegger formulates his goal as gaining a free relation to technology—away of living with technology that does not allow it to “warp, confuse, and lay waste our nature”. According to Heidegger, our nature is to be world disclosers. That is, by means of our equipment and coordinated practices, we human beings open coherent, distinct contexts or worlds in which we perceive, feel, act, and think. The Heidegger of Being and Time called a world an understanding of being and argued that such an understanding of being is what makes it possible for us to encounter people and things as kinds of beings. He considered his discovery...
    • "Further Reflections on Heidegger, Technology, and the Everyday" (2003)
      (p.348) Heidegger sees technology as disaggregating our identities into a contingently built-up collection of skills, technological things solicit certain skills without requiring that we take ourselves as having one kind of identity or another. This absence may make our mode of being as world disclosers invisible to us. This absence of worlds and disclosing would be what Heidegger calls the greatest danger. But this absence could also allow us to become sensitive to the various identities we have when we are engaged in disclosing the different worlds focused by different kinds of things. Then, as such disclosers, we could even respond to technological things as revealing one kind of local world and become...
    • "Further Reflections on Heidegger, Technology, and the Everyday" (2003)
  • Dreyus, Hubert L; Spinosa, Charles
  • Ebben, Maureen
  • Feenberg, Andrew
    • "Critical theory of technology: An overview" (2008)
      (p.32) According to Heidegger’s history of being, the modern “revealing” is biased by a tendency to take every object as a potential raw material for technical action. Objects enter our experience only in so far as we notice theirusefulness in the technological system. Release from this form of experience may come from a new mode of revealing, but Heidegger has no idea how revealings come and go. 
    • "Critical theory of technology: An overview" (2008)
      (p.33) Much philosophy of technology offers very abstract and unhistorical accounts of the essence of technology. These accounts appear painfully thin compared to the rich complexity revealed in social studies of technology. Yet technology has the distinguishing features sketched above and these have normative implications. As Marcuse argued in One-Dimensional Man, the choice of a technical rather than a political or moral solution to a social problem is politically and morally significant. The dilemma divides technology studies into two opposed branches. Most essentialist philosophy of technology is critical of modernity, even antimodern, while most empirical research on technologies ignores the larger issue of modernity and thus appears uncritical,...
    • "Critical theory of technology: An overview" (2008)
      (p.38) Technological systems impose technical management on human beings. Some manage, while others are managed. […] The world appears quite differently from these two positions. The strategic standpoint privileges considerations of control and efficiency and looks for affordances, precisely what Heidegger criticizes in technology.
    • "Critical theory of technology: An overview" (2008)
      (p.44) Building an integrated and unified picture of our world has become far more difficult as technical advances break down the barriers between spheres of activity to which the division between disciplines corresponds. I believe that critical theory of technology offers a platform for reconciling many apparently conflicting strands of reflection on technology. Only through an approach that is both critical and empirically oriented is it possible to make sense of what is going on around us now. The first generation of Critical Theorists called for just such a synthesis of theoretical and empirical approaches.
    • "Critical theory of technology: An overview" (2008)
    • Questioning Technology (2012)
    • "Heidegger and Marcuse: the catastrophe and redemption of technology" (2014)
  • Fritsche, Johannes
    • "Heidegger on Machination, the Jewish Race, and the Holocaust" (2018)
      (p.312) Heidegger means by Rechnen any objectification of beings for the sake of using, dominating, or exploiting them. After his disappointment with the National Socialism of his day around 1937/8, Heidegger presents a theory of Machenschaft (machination) according to which reckoning has been present in all phases of Western philosophy and history, from the beginning in the preSocratics onwards. Prior to modernity, however, it was always subordinated to, or embedded in, practices and modes of unconcealment or truth different from itself, while in modernity it has become the exclusive truth: a step-by-step emancipation of reckoning as a history of decline.
    • "Heidegger on Machination, the Jewish Race, and the Holocaust" (2018)
      (p.316) In §26 of Being and Time, Heidegger introduces three modes of being-with-other Daseine, a “deficient” one and two “positive” ones,as he says in a variation of Hegel’s terminology.28 At the very beginning of §26, referring back to the sections on handiness, he pictures the pre-modern world: the craftsman in his workshop, the tailor cutting clothes to the figure, the corn fields referring to our friends and acquaintances, the boats in theriver doing the same, and sometimes an “‘alien boat’.” Without this pre-modern world, the three modes in §26 would be unintelligible. The world of the craftsmen, or community, is historically the first mode of being-with-other-Daseine,...
    • "Heidegger on Machination, the Jewish Race, and the Holocaust" (2018)
  • Goyal, Arjun; Aneja, Ranjan
  • Hanson, Robin
  • Heidegger, Martin
    • The question concerning technology (1977)
      (p.10) But in what, then, does the playing in unison of the four ways of occasioning play? They let what is not yet present arrive into presencing. Accordingly,  they are unifiedly ruled over by a bringing  that brings what presences into appearance. Plato tells us what this bringing is  in  a  sentence from the Symposium (20sb): he gar toi ek tau me onton eis to on ionti hotoioun aitia pasa  esti poiesis. -"Every occasion for whatever passes over and goes forward into presencing from that which is  not presencing is poiesis, is bringing-forth [Her-vor-bringen] ."9-It  is of utmost importance that  we  think...
    • The question concerning technology (1977)
      (p.14) What is modern technology? It too is a  revealing. Only when we allow our attention to rest on  this fundamental characteristic does that which is new in modern technology show itself to us. And  yet  the revealing that holds  sway throughout modern technology does not unfold into a bringing-forth in the sense of poiesis. The revealing that rules in modern technology is a  chal­lenging [Herausfordern], which puts to nature the unreasonable demand  that it  supply energy that can be extracted and stored as such. But does this not hold true for the old windmill as well? No. Its sails do...
    • The question concerning technology (1977)
      (p.17) Yet an airliner that stands on the runway is surely an  object. Certainly. We can represent the machine so. But then it conceals itself as  to  what and how it is.  Revealed, it  stands on the taxi strip only as  standing-reserve, inasmuch as it  is  ordered to  en­sure  the possibility of transportation. For  this it must be in its whole structure and in everyone of its constituent parts, on call for duty, i.e., ready for takeoff. (Here it  would be appropriate to  discuss  Hegel's definition of  the  machine as  an autonomous tool. When applied to the tools of the craftsman,...
    • The question concerning technology (1977)
      (p.18) Wherever man opens his eyes and ears, unlocks his heart, and gives himself over to meditating and striving, shaping and working, entreating and thanking, he finds himself everywhere already brought into the unconcealed. 
    • The question concerning technology (1977)
      (p.27) when we consider the essence of technology we experience enframing as a destining of revealing. In this way we are already sojourning within the free space of destining, that in no way confines us to a stultified compulsion to push on blindly with technology. . . . [M]an, precisely as the one so threatened, exalts himself and postures as lord of the earth. In this way the illusion comes to prevail that everything man encounters exists only in so far as it is his construct. This illusion gives rise in turn to one final delusion: it seems as though man everywhere and always encounters only himself. ....
    • The question concerning technology (1977)
      (p.5) The current conception of technology, according to which it is a  means and a  human activity, can therefore be called the in­strumental and anthropological definition of technology. Who would ever deny that it is correct? It is in  obvious con­formity with what we are envisioning when we talk about tech­nology. The instrumental definition of  technology is  indeed so uncannily correct that it  even holds for modern technology, of which,  all other respects, we maintain with some justification that it  is,  in contrast to  the older handwork technology, some­thing completely different and  therefore new.
    • The question concerning technology (1977)
  • Heikkurinen, Pasi
  • Helms, Eleanor; Dobson, John
  • Kouppanou, Anna
  • Kroker, Arthur
  • Lloyd, Caroline; Payne, Jonathan
  • Lotz, Christian
    • "Reification through Commodity Form or Technology? From Honneth back to Heidegger and Marx" (2013)
      (p.193) Heidegger’s view of the concept of labor is closely connected to Junger’s Der Arbeiter, within which Junger outlines the transformation of modern human beings into ‘‘workers.’’ The total mobilization of human beings through labor leads, according to Heidegger, to the domination of the earth transforms everything into energy to be exploited, and is rooted in manipulation. Laboring, according to Heidegger, is basically an exploitative relationship toward beings, especially since it establishes beings as something that in principle can be labored upon. This, in turn, presupposes that beings are accessible to the laboring subject. Heidegger’s argument, consequently, is that labor as a universal (human) concept, as can be found...
    • "Reification through Commodity Form or Technology? From Honneth back to Heidegger and Marx" (2013)
      (p.194) As Heidegger argues in his technology essay, modern technology should be understood as (1) the loss of the unity between thing and world (‘‘de-worlding’’) and as (2) the reduction of ‘‘technics’’ to a single form of causality, namely, causa materialis. When Heidegger introduces the essence of modern technology in histechnology essay, he claims that modern technology is still a form of revealing, but the revealing is now of a different character, which he calls challenging (Herausfordern). This transition is important, as it allows us to reject the claim that the difference between modern and nonmodern technology seems to be absolutein Heidegger. It is rather the opposite:...
    • "Reification through Commodity Form or Technology? From Honneth back to Heidegger and Marx" (2013)
  • Petropoulos, Georgios
  • Pfeiffer, Sabine
  • Riis, Søren
  • Roberts, David
    • "Technology and modernity: Spengler, Jünger, Heidegger, Cassirer" (2012)
      (p.22) Junger’s cold and penetrating gaze serves his apocalyptic construction of world history: the destruction of the hated bourgeois world and the dawn of the age of the totalitarian Worker State, in which the figure (Gestalt) of the Worker embodies the destiny of man to master the earth. Junger’s new man is the Nietzschean Superman, who is capable of facing and welcoming the terrifying annihilating reality of the world as Will to Power, revealed in the Great War. His ‘heroic realism’ separates the Worker from the ‘bourgeois’ individual who anxiously clings to life and security as his highest values. The invasion of bourgeois space by the ‘elemental’ powers...
    • "Technology and modernity: Spengler, Jünger, Heidegger, Cassirer" (2012)
      (p.24) Power, in Junger’s Nietzschean reading, is inherently totalitarian. The Worker mobilizes the world through technology, a process that declares war on all historical systems and religious institutions and reaches its conclusion with the destruction of all nation-states. They will all be swept away by the revolution of the Worker, which installs itself as the superior race. The machine, we may say, ends as with Spengler by emancipating itself from its masters because the Worker, the self-enslaving representative of power, ‘transcends’ the distinction between masters and servants, even if Junger (like Hitler and Himmler) accords a privileged role to military orders...
    • "Technology and modernity: Spengler, Jünger, Heidegger, Cassirer" (2012)
  • Sasa, Michael Sunday
  • Standish, Paul
    • "Heidegger and the technology of further education" (1997)
      (p.441) It is Heidegger's bold claim that the technology of the modern world is the consequence, indeed the inevitable outcome, of the metaphysics of ancient Greece, specifically of a philosophical perspective that starts with Plato. The distinction in Plato between form and matter leads to the timeless and in effect permanently present eidos, a kind of freezing of temporality, a kind of eternal present. In modern terms the eidos can be seen as something like a blue-print for hyle (underlying substance or matter). This leads to an idealisation of total presence, where local differences pale into insignificance. (One might now be...
    • "Heidegger and the technology of further education" (1997)
      (p.443) This context of rapid industrialisation may have its bearing on the preoccupation throughout Heidegger's writing with work and with technology. In this he was again influenced by Nietzsche but also, to his cost, by Ernst Junger. Junger fully embraced new technology and idealised the role of the worker in service of the fully technological state. This was carried to its extreme in the combination of heroism, nationalism, and technology that war made possible. He claimed that the worker/soldier epitomised a higher form of life and the realisation of Germany's destiny. In a strange distortion of Nietzsche, Junger recognised such conditions...
    • "Heidegger and the technology of further education" (1997)
      (p.444) Heidegger at times - in the notorious Rectoral Address of 1933, for example (Heidegger, 1985) - appears to share something of Junger's sense of the beauty of labour and service. Whatever the importance of these eulogies to the worker/soldier, however, it is clear that the part played by work and technology in his thought is more subtle and more complex. A starting point for the discussion of this is the question of techne, a concept that will lead us into aspects of the phenomenology of Being and Time.Superficially the account of techne in Aristotle seems appropriate to the nature of...
    • "Heidegger and the technology of further education" (1997)
      (p.445) Certainly the workshop world seems to be in many respects a world apart from industrialised technology and it may be significant that Heidegger's examples tend to be taken from craft activities that are (and were for Heidegger in the 1920s) tinged with anachronism.
    • "Heidegger and the technology of further education" (1997)
      (p.449) [...] let us consider the kind of response to technology that is offered especially by Heidegger's later work. One response involves a turning away from the vision that Heidegger derives from Nietzsche and Junger, with its nadir of faith in a political leader, and towards the shamanic figures of the poet and the thinker: Holderlin is now the supreme inspiration. Reverence for the word displaces the earlier emphasis on the workshop world. The German language assumes a unique historical importance, the rightful heir to the language of the Greeks and the rich origin of an alternative understanding of being. Heidegger...
    • "Heidegger and the technology of further education" (1997)
      (p.453) Rational accounting and evaluation [within educational institutions], it is claimed, demonstrate value for money and the quality of the service. But these factors bring with them the impoverishments of distantiality, averageness and levelling down (which Heidegger subsumes under the category of publicness - Die Offentlichkeit). Accessibility and efficiency seem to serve the customer yet staff and students become subservient to the system. Within this regime of efficiency, the idealisation of work and the worker takes on a new style. As obsolete workshops are refurnished and carpeted, the noise of heavy machinery is replaced by the soft clatter of keyboards. A...
    • "Heidegger and the technology of further education" (1997)
  • Taylor, James Michael
  • Waddington, David I
  • Wajcman, Judy; Rose, Emily
  • Walton, Nigel; Nayak, Bhabani Shankar
  • Wolff, Ernst
  • Zimmerman, Michael
    • "Marx and Heidegger on the Technological Domination of Nature" (1979)
      (p.107) at a certain level, Marx and Heidegger seem to say similar things about the proper functioning of the human being. For Marx, the individual fulfills himself in making, doing, and creating a world for himself. For Heidegger, the individual becomes authentic by letting things be what they can be. For Marx, creative activity is restricted primarily to commodity (alienated) production in the capitalist society, but in the communist world all production would eventually involve the self-fulfillment of the worker's human need to express himself. For Heidegger, "letting beings be" is no simple-minded staring, but could include the activity of the...
    • "Marx and Heidegger on the Technological Domination of Nature" (1979)
      (p.99) Both Heidegger and Marx claim that technology is not intrinsically destructive, but at present it is used in exploitative and harmful ways. By "technology,'' I mean all facets of the complex system of production and distribution which emerges with the practical application of calculating, objectifying rationality. 
    • "Marx and Heidegger on the Technological Domination of Nature" (1979)
  • Zimmerman, Michael E
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.110) In 1936, Heidegger wondered whether Hegel was right in saying that art is something past, without power for the modern spirit: "is art still an essential and necessary way in which that truth happens which is so decisive for our historical existence, or is art no longer of this character?" [HW: 67/81] Heideggerbelieved that technology and art were related in that both were truth events:both were ways of letting entities be. Ordinarily, the Greek word techne is translated as a skilled making of the  sort which anticipated the amazing production process of industrial technology. Heidegger argued, however,that techne had a twofold meaning. On the one...
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.151) Early Heidegger argued that uprooted modern humanity no longer "dwelt" authentically upon the earth. Later, in his lectures on Holderlin, he said that dwelling occurs only when entities are "gathered" (versammelt) intoa world in which the integrity of things is preserved. Such a world would be intrinsically "local," bound up with place in a way wholly foreign to the planetary reach of modern technology. According to Dreyfus, Being andTime—despite later Heidegger's dislike of planetary technology—anticipated "total mobilization" by conceiving of the local workshop-world as a region within the all-encompassing region: the referential totality.'
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.241) The degradation of work in the twentieth century has reduced the time and skill needed for authenticcraftwork, except for those who "drop out" of the social mainstream in orderto pursue what they consider to be authentic producing. Nevertheless, greatcraftworkers remain. Perhaps the attraction such craftspeople have for us todaylies in our awareness that they are attuned to things in a way in whichmost of us are not. Consider, however, the admiration many people displayfor the intricate circuitry of a computer or the engine of a Mercedes-Benz. Weoften express amazement at the precision and beauty of such products. For themost part, they...
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.40) Heidegger's affiliation with National( Socialism may be understood, in part, in terms of his belief that only a corporatist, fascist community could protect German working people from the evils of wage slavery andatomistic individualism in capitalism, on the one hand, and from the ills of materialism and massification in communism, on the other.
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.77) As we have seen, in  the  first phase of hisconfrontationwithjunger,Heideggerappropriatedjunger'slanguage  in order to support a revolutionary movement which heralded an alternative to the technological future  forecast  by Junger. After the  Rohm  purge  onJune30,1934,Heideggerbeganthe  long process of distancing himself from  the"politicalreality"ofNationalSocialism,butcon-tinuedtomeditateon its"innertruthandgreatness."Thismeditation,whichinvolvedatumtowardart,  was carried out in his lectures on Nietzsche and on Holderlin. Nietzsche's views on  the world-shaping powers of art  offered a way of understanding the metaphysical basis  for junger's doctrine of the Gestalt of the worker, while Holderlin's poetry seemed to  offer  a  saving alternative to junger's technological future.  In  this chapter, we begin to study Heidegger's artistic "tum"...
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.81) Trapped within Nietzsche's metaphysics, Junger conceived of the Gestalt of the worker in terms  of a certain kind of humanity. He spoke  as if the Gestalt of the worker forged together in humanity the calculating,  steely powers of the machine and  the  atavistic, passionate energies  of the Will to Power at work in all  life. As we  have seen, however,  Heidegger believed that this  view  of  humanity  as half-animal, half-rational was  the  final stage  of the decline of Aristotle's doctrine of  the "rational animal" in Nietzsche's "blond beast" who would dominate the earth with modern technology.
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.82) Heidegger maintained, by way of contrast, that humanity has been transformed into the worker because   today "to be" means "to be worked upon  and transformed in accordance with the imperative of production for its own sake."
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.88) As elitists, Heidegger and junger believed that the technological era could  be carried to its completion only  by  an  elite corps of humanity who scorned the cheerful optimism of mass culture. junger's "worker" was by  no means equivalent to Marx's "proletariat"! Heidegger and junger looked to Nietzsche for insight into   the remarkable men, the "overmen," needed to complete the process of nihilism. junger had spoken of his interpretation of such men in his collection of essays The Adventurous Heart.[AH] These men were  willing  to  use violence in order to pursue the uncharted paths being opened up  by modern technology. Regarding ...
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.90) For Heidegger, junger's technological man had not gone far enough.
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
      (p.xvi) From the beginning of his career, Heidegger was centrally concerned with the nature of working and producing—and with its relation to the question of the being of entities. It was no accident that he began Being and Time with an account of the world of the workshop and equipment.
    • Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, and Art (1990)
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