Presentation Details

The Second International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities

The Postmodern Technological Paradigm: The Turning

Dr. George Teschner.


The paper considers the technological crisis from an ecological and ideological point of view. Much environmental philosophy and environmental ethics has not critiqued technology as a metaphysics. Western technological culture should be treated as a system of values and beliefs comparable in scope to Confucianism, Islam, Christianity, Marxism, etc., which provide a worldview that defines the totality of things, in short a metaphysics. Major features of Heidegger's critique of technology is explored. Heidegger argues that technology has obscured Being as a whole as well as the being of the individual things. Heidegger analysis of the ancient Greek term 'techne' yields a possible prescription for modern technology by claiming that ancient Greek technology combined in a single manifold artistic, epistemic and religious values and was inseparable from these. The transfiguration of technology in what Heidegger calls the ‘Turning' reveals technology as a metaphysics and brings to light technology's interpretation of nature as resource, thereby placing technology in a larger perspective that will impose natural limits upon it. The symbolism of the Hindu goddess Kali represents an alternative to nature conceived as resource. The paper sets forth an interpretation of Kali’s image as an alternative to the conception of nature as resource and to the metaphysics that is implicit in the technological paradigm.

Presenters

Dr. George Teschner  (United States)
Chairman
Philosophy Department,
Christopher Newport University

Professor of Philosophy with specialization in Comparative Philosophy, Existentialism, Philosophy of Technology and Philosophy in Popular Culture.

Keywords
  • Heidegger
  • Technology
  • Hindu philosophy
  • The Turning
Person as Subject
  • Heidegger



(30 min. Conference Paper, English)