Books, articles, reports and films about corporate technology, plus links to publications and websites where you can find reliable information on related issues, as well as campaign groups taking action on them.
Castoriadis, C., Philosophy, Politics, Autonomy, 1991
Oxford: Oxford University Press, ISBN-10: 0195069633, ISBN-13: 978-0195069631
These remarkable essays include Cornelius Castoriadis's latest contributions to philosophy, political and social theory, classical studies, development theory, cultural criticism, science, and ecology. Examining the "co-birth" in ancient Greece of philosophy and politics, Castoriadis shows how the Greeks' radical questioning of established ideas and institutions gave rise to the "project of autonomy". The "end of philosophy" proclaimed by Postmodernism would mean the end of this project. That end is now hastened by the lethal expansion of technoscience, the waning of political and social conflict, and the resignation of intellectuals who blindly defend Western culture as it is or who merely denounce or "deconstruct" it as it has been. Discussing and criticizing Plato, Aristotle, Leibniz, Kant, Hegel, Weber, Heidegger, and Habermas, the author of The Imaginary Institution of Society and Crossroads in the Labyrinth poses a radical challenge to our inherited philosophy.
Cooper, M.Life as Surplus: Biotechnology & Capitalism in the Neoliberal Era, 2008
Seattle: University of Washington Press, ISBN-10: 029598791X, ISBN-13: 978-0295987910
Focusing on the period between the 1970s and the present, "Life as Surplus" is a pointed and important study of the relationship between politics, economics, science, and cultural values in the United States today. Melinda Cooper demonstrates that the history of biotechnology cannot be understood without taking into account the simultaneous rise of neo-liberalism as a political force and an economic policy. From the development of recombinant DNA technology in the 1970s to the second Bush administration's policies on stem cell research, Cooper connects the utopian polemic of free-market capitalism with growing internal contradictions of the commercialized life sciences. The biotech revolution relocated economic production at the genetic, microbial, and cellular level. Taking as her point of departure the assumption that life has been drawn into the circuits of value creation, Cooper underscores the relations between scientific, economic, political, and social practices. In penetrating analyses of Reagan-era science policy, the militarization of the life sciences, HIV politics, pharmaceutical imperialism, tissue engineering, stem cell science, and the pro-life movement, the author examines the speculative impulses that have animated the growth of the bio-economy. At the very core of the new post-industrial economy is the transformation of biological life into surplus value."Life as Surplus" offers a clear assessment of both the transformative, therapeutic dimensions of the contemporary life sciences and the violence, obligation, and debt servitude crystallizing around the emerging bio-economy. Melinda Cooper is a research fellow with the Centre for Biomedicine and Society, Kings College London.
Derrick Jensen and George Draffan, Welcome to the machine: science, surveillance, and the culture of control, 2004
Chelsea Green Publishing, ISBN:
Using philosopher Jeremy Bentham's "panopticon" as a central lens of observation in their eagerly awaited investigation of today's technology-dominated information society, critically acclaimed radical writers Jensen and Draffan (coauthors, Strangely Like War) explore shifting relations between the masses and the powers that govern them, namely, government and corporations. They note that the globalization of industry and capital, made possible by advances in information and communications technologies, is centralizing power through ever-increasing surveillance capabilities (e.g., biometrics, identity chips), thereby creating a society of pawns in a mechanized, dysfunctional civilization obsessed with consumption. Although this book is well researched and intelligently written, the overwhelmingly negative tone distracts from the message. The rebalancing of power is not as completely one sided as the authors preach, and they surprisingly ignore the role of "code warriors" in today's revolutionary times.
Clifford Conner, A People's History Of Science: Miners, Midwives, And "Low Mechanicks", 2005
Nation Books, ISBN: 9781560257486
"A delightfully refreshing new look at the history of science. I know of nothing like it, because it approaches that history free of the usual elitist preconceptions, and shows, in an inspiring way, the role that ordinary people, working people, played in the development of science. He presents startling new historical data which should create some commotion in the halls of orthodoxy." -Howard Zinn
Science has always been a collective endeavor, and here, finally, Conner rescues the ordinary laboring masses from obscurity,and details their myriad contributions to science, medicine, chemistry, metallurgy, geology, archaeology, mathematics, mechanics, and much more.
Jeffrey Smith, Seeds Of Deception: Exposing Industry And Government Lies About The Safety Of the Genetically Engineered Foods You're Eating, 2004
Chelsea Green, ISBN: 9780972966580
This explosive exposé reveals how industry manipulation and political collusion—not sound science—allow dangerous, genetically engineered food into your daily diet. Company research is rigged, alarming evidence of health dangers covered up, and intense political pressure applied. Read the actual internal memos by FDA scientists warning of toxins, allergies, and new diseases—all ignored by their superiors, including a former attorney for Monsanto. Discover how industry studies are designed to avoid finding problems. Learn why the FDA withheld information from Congress after a genetically modified supplement killed nearly a hundred people and disabled thousands.
"Clear, profound, and unerringly accurate, Seeds Of Deception tells you what you need to know about genetically engineered food—and what Monsanto won't tell you. If you care about the safety of our food supply, if you care about the future of life on this dear planet, if you care what corporations are doing to your food and health, this is the book to get." —John Robbins
Brian Tokar (Editor), Gene Traders: Biotechnology, World Trade, And The Globalization Of Hunger, 2004
Toward Freedom, ISBN: 9780974693514
"Brian Tokar brings us a gold mine of in-depth investigations showing exactly how corporations and global institutions are systematically manipulating governments, farmers and public opinion to gain control over our food supply. Gene Traders provides the detail and insight we need to take part in the global democracy movement to reverse this catastrophe." —Frances Moore Lappe
In this broad and comprehensive survey, seven authors show how the interplay of trade policy, "development" politics, and biotechnology increases dependency and hunger, while compromising the survival of traditional farmers and their communities.
David Watson, Against The Megamachine: Essays On Empire & Its Enemies, 1999
Autonomedia, ISBN: 9781570270871
A sterling collection of essays, largely rewritten and reworked, that have appeared over the last 15 years in Fifth Estate. The State, empire and war, and humanity's tragic relation to the natural world are the central themes. Alas, one of the few contemporary thinkers still pushing the envelope today. "David Watson is one of the handful of thinkers and authors who have managed to address technology in all of its dimensions—its effects on individual consciousness, on political power, on social and cultural forms, and on the natural world." —Jerry Mander
Lewis Mumford, The Future Of Technics And Civilization, 1986
Freedom Press, ISBN: 9780900384325
A brilliant survey of our response to changing technology, which sets out the prerequisites for a rational use of our discoveries and inventions as a means of human liberation rather than enslavement.
Feenberg, A. Critical Theory of Technology, 1991
Oxford: Oxford University Press, ISBN-10: 0195068556, ISBN-13: 978-0195068559
Modern technology is more than a neutral tool: it is the framework of our civilization and shapes our way of life. Social critics claim that we must choose between this way of life and human values. Critical Theory of Technology challenges that pessimistic cliche. This pathbreaking book argues that the roots of the degradation of labor, education, and the environment lie not in technology per se but in the cultural values embodied in its design. Rejecting such popular solutions as economic simplicity or spiritual renewal, Feenberg presents a compelling argument for broader democratic participation in technological choices. This book will be of special interest to scholars and students of philosophy, sociology, contemporary Marxism, and Critical Theory.
The book can be read online here: http://www-rohan.sdsu.edu/faculty/feenberg/ctt.htm
Feenberg, A. Questioning Technology, 1999
London: Routledge, ISBN-10: 0415197554, ISBN-13: 978-0415197557
In this extraordinary introduction to the study of the philosophy of technology, Andrew Feenberg argues that techonological design is central to the social and political structure of modern societies. Environmentalism, information technology, and medical advances testify to technology's crucial importance.
In his lucid and engaging style, Feenberg shows that technology is the medium of daily life. Every major technical changes reverberates at countless levels: economic, political, and cultural. If we continue to see the social and technical domains as being seperate, then we are essentially denying an integral part of our existence, and our place in a democratic society.
Questioning Tecchnology convinces us that it is vital that we learn more about technology the better to live with it and to manage it.
Techno-fixes: A critical guide to climate change technologies, 2006
This report investigates the large scale technologies that corporations and governments are putting on the table, including hydrogen, carbon capture and storage, agrofuels, electricity from nuclear, solar and wind, as well as a range of ideas to reflect the sun’s energy or remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
It finds what works, what doesn’t, the present state of these industries and where they’re heading. It explains why, even though many of the technologies do work, the corporate-capitalist model cannot deploy them effectively, and it goes in search of more realistic and socially just solutions
Degrees Of Capture: Universities, the Oil Industry and Climate Change , 2003
This report examines the relationship between the oil and gas industry
and the UK higher education sector, and assesses this in the context of
climate change. It asks if some parts of the higher education sector
have been ‘captured’a by the industry.
The report looks in detail at how much influence oil and gas companies
have over R&D priorities, and to what extent public money is
supporting both the extraction of fossil fuels and the profits of
Universities could play an important role in leading the debate about
energy economics and developing sustainable alternatives to fossil
fuels. Yet universities are engaged in research and technology
development which is used by the oil and gas industry, and are the
recruiting and training grounds for its future managers.
After detailing the ways in which the research and teaching agendas
are influenced by oil companies, the report makes a series of
recommendations to put universities onto a more sustainable path.
Fotopoulos, T. Towards a Democratic Conception of Science and Technology, 1997
Brian Wynne, ‘Public understanding of science’
in S. Jasanoff et al (eds), Handbook of Science and Technology Studies (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 1995)
Takis Fotopoulos, Towards a Democratic Conception of Science and Technology, March 1999
Scientists for Global Responsibility: http://www.sgr.org.uk
Institute of Science In Society: http://www.i-sis.org.uk/index.php
Carbon Trade Watch: http://www.carbontradewatch.org
The ETC Group: http://www.etcgroup.org
Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: http://scholar.lib.vt.edu/ejournals/SPT/spt.html
Questioning Technology: http://www.questiontechnology.org
Physicians and Scientists for the Responsible application of Science and Technology:
The Low Level Radiation Campaign: http://www.llrc.org
Genetic Resources Action International: http://www.grain.org/front
Norfolk genetic information network: http://members.tripod.com/~ngin
Greenpeace International's Genetic Engineering Campaign: http://www.greenpeace.org/~geneng
The Nature Institute: http://www.natureinstitute.org/gene/index.htm
The Nature Institute is a not-for-profit research and educational institute in rural upstate New York that offers clear and insightful information about biotechnology to provide the basis for public participation in a conscious and responsible approach to our shared future.
Renewable Energy Association: http://www.r-e-a.net/policy/REA-policy/RET/coalition
The Radical Technology Collective: https://we.riseup.net/radtechcol
The Radical Technology Collective is a group dedicated to advocating free software in the anarchist community, in order to transfer anarchist ideals to the digital age and to promote effective, safe activism.
Gene Watch UK: http://www.genewatch.org
GM Watch: http://gmwatch.eu/contact
Biofuel Watch: http://www.biofuelwatch.org.uk
Andrew Feenberg's homepage (philosopher of technology): http://www-rohan.sdsu.edu/faculty/feenberg/
http://www.orpheusweb.co.uk/john.rose/biomyth.html - A quick checklist on biotech myths from an academic at University College Berkeley
Angelo Sacerdote, Fed Up!: Genetic Engineering, Industrial Agriculture And Sustainable Alternatives (DVD), September 2004
Wholesome Goodness Productions, ISBN: 9781931498838
Using hilarious and disturbing archival footage and featuring interviews with farmers, scientists, government officials, and activists, Fed Up! presents an entertaining, informative, and compelling overview of our current food production system from the Green Revolution to the Biotech Revolution and what we can do about it. Special DVD features include chapter selections, English subtitles, and three archival films.