In chapter 11 (The Loving Resistance Fighter) of the book Technopoly, published in 1992, Neil Postman focuses on a solution to the problems created by Technopoly. A "Technopoly" (a word postman capitalizes throughout the book) is a society that no longer merely uses technology as a support system but instead is shaped by it. Postman proposes that we become "loving resistance fighter(s)" who retain "the narratives and symbols that once made the United States the hope of the world"(p.182). He believes education is to lead the resistance against technology by changing the curriculum to help restore a sense of meaning and purpose lost to the Technopoly. This change in curriculum puts a large emphasis on humanity's historical development.
As an engaging cultural critic, professor at New York University, and author of numerous books on the themes of education and technology, Neil Postman is well positioned to comment on the relation of technology to culture. The relation as he sees it is one in which culture is subservient to and controlled by both invisible (I.Q. scores, statistics, polling techniques) and visible (television, computers, automobiles) technologies. Technology, Postman admits, is a friend but mostly it is a dangerous enemy that intrudes into a culture, changing everything, while destroying the vital sources of our humanity.
Neil Postman offers direction to those who want to defend themselves from the destructive effects of Technopoly. This direction is based on the idea of the loving resistance fighter. The loving resistance fighter is the perfect balance of admiration for the country and resistance to Technopoly. The resis...
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...on earlier in the book and finally proposes his idea that Technopoly can possibly be conquered through a new curriculum, although it may be an extreme challenge. As a cultural critic, Postman goes beyond just complaining, but also gives the reader a sense of closure and a suggestion for a possible change. His description of the world as he sees it does force us to ask many important questions-questions about the role of technology and science, our relation to them, how they change us and how we change them. Technopoly is an inspiring book that made me look at the insane way we live our lives, and how dependent we are on technology. Postman stresses where and when technologies took over, without forgetting to give credit for many advances that come from technology. I recommend this book for anyone that has ever questioned technology and the way its leading us.
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- Neil Postman was born on March 8, 1931 and died October 5, 2003. He received a master's degree in 1955 and a doctorate of education degree in 1958, both from the Teachers College, Columbia University. He began teaching at New York University in 1959. In 1971, he founded a program in media ecology at the Steinhardt School of Education of NYU and in 1993 he was appointed a University Professor, and was chairman of the Department of Culture and Communication until 2002. Postman wrote 18 books and more than 200 magazine and newspaper articles.... [tags: Biography Work Neil Postman]
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