Postman’s article really resonated with my day to day reality, as I have recently come to realize how we can be either masters or slaves of technology. Reading his interpretation of technology and its effects, I realized how readily I surrender to new technologies without necessarily weighing their outcomes, and how I am now, as a result, almost incapable of imagining my life without technology. Isaac Assimov’s statement “I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them” has become a daily reality. Work and play have become intrinsically linked to the technology that I use. I think a technophobe might take issue with this, but in many ways, we’re dependant on certain technologies now (and have been since our birth): electricity, motor transportation, running water.
Considering Postman’s pessimistic view of technology, it will be interesting to see whether the next generation comes to depend on certain technologies much in the same way we have always depended on electricity and running water, and whether this will somehow ‘corrupt’ them, as Thamus claimed writing has our memories.
Postman, N. (1992). Technopoly: The surrender of culture to technology. New York: Vintage Books.