This is the title of the last chapter of Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology by well-known cultural critic Neil Postman. You may be more familiar with his book about television or education or one of the other tomes he has penned on various topics. Technopoly is the first of Postman’s work that I’ve read though and it resonated quite strongly with me.
The basic premise of the book is that we are living in an age governed by machines and that this is not a positive development. If you’re turned off by this thesis statement, I urge you to fight that feeling of revulsion and read the book anyway. This is not a treatise against iPhones, Twitter, or anything else like that. It has at its core much bigger thoughts and ideas.
Perhaps the thing I liked most about Technopoly is that Postman, in writing it, engaged in one of my favorite activities: questioning the conventional wisdom or status quo (more on convention wisdom when I finish my current read, Freakonomics). Such questioning is an activity I recommend everyone to engage in regularly. Question everything. Rigorously analyze everything. Don’t come to conclusions easily or quickly.
But back to this last chapter. In it, Postman lays out what a technopoly resister should commit to. I think they’re great ideas and would love it if everyone gave them a try. Should you want to attempt it, Postman asks loving resistance fighters to be people…