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NY BOK om teknikens och vetenskapens kultur- och idehistoria


"Hard, Prof. Mikael" <[log in to unmask]>


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Thu, 23 Jun 2005 17:37:10 +0200





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Mikael Hård and Andrew Jamison: _Hubris and Hybrids: A Cultural History of
Technology and Science_ (Routledge, New York, June 2005)

_Hubris and Hybrids_ offers an innovative framework for understanding the
social implications of scientific and technological developments throughout
the last 500 years. The authors use European and North American as well as
examples from areas such as film, industrial design, and alternative
technologies to illustrate their assessment of the future of technology and
science--a process that might resolve the contradictions of our contemporary
high-tech civilization in a way that actually improves the human condition.

The book is organized in four parts. The first presents the "roots of
technoscience," by reexamining the so-called scientific and industrial
revolutions, and following the central sites of knowledge production and
innovation into the present. In the second part, "the machine in the mind,"
the focus is on the intellectual and artistic representations of science and
technology. The third part, "machines and knowledge in action," is about key
areas of application and everyday appropriation - transportation and
mobility, communications and media, sanitation and hygiene. The fourth part,
"coping with technoscience" takes up issues of governance and politics, both
in general terms as well as in relation to environmental issues.

The book should be of interest for students in history and the social
sciences, as well as in the history of science and technology. It could also
be useful in providing food for reflective thought for scientists and
engineers, as well as for concerned citizens everywhere.

Some advance reviews:

Vandana Shiva, author of _Staying Alive_ and _Stolen Harvest_:
"Hubris and Hybrids is an extremely important book for opening the debate on
technology, democracy, science and society, knowledge and responsibility in
a period when technology and science are reengineering the earth and our

Jeffrey C. Alexander, co-editor of _Cultural Trauma and Collective
"_Hubris and Hybrids_ is a wise and broadly synthetic work that brings
coherence to a tremendous amount of historical research on scientific

Harold Dorn, co-author of _Science and Technology in World History_:
"Hård and Jamison have written a history of modern science and technology
with a fresh perspective . . . . Along with the play of ideas that captured
the interest of an older generation of historians they have focused their
narrative on current concerns-'knowledge that could actually be applied for
the benefit of man.' It is a tour de force of science writing."

Thomas Misa, author of _Leonardo to the Internet_:
"Hubris and Hybrids subverts the varied 'grand narratives' commonly told
about modern technology and science. Instead, Hård and Jamison offer an
alternative set of well-crafted 'small narratives.' These new stories of
science and social movements, machine-breaking, environmentalism, and the
politics of development lay the groundwork for a bold and much needed
cultural assessment of technology and science."

To order a copy, click to or any electronic bookseller
( is currently offering a 20% discount).

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