Written by Wayne Grady
Publication Date November 27, 2010
"[The Groundwork Guides] are excellent books, mandatory for school libraries and the increasing body of young people prepared to take ownership of the situations and problems previous generations have left them." -- Globe and Mail
There is no doubt that we have come to rely on technology, not only for our comfort and convenience, but for our very survival as a species. A hundred and fifty years ago, Charles Darwin noted wryly that if the human species were returned to the wild without the advantage of technology, we would become extinct in six weeks.
Since that time, technology has proliferated to the extent that we can no longer conceive of life without it. As this book shows, technology is more than the sum of the tools we use, whether they are primitive ploughs or space shuttles. It is a way of seeing the world, the way we determine how the world works -- technology is a way of thinking.
We see this in the way technology has invaded our language: we speak of the education system, the cultural industry. Since the 18th century, we have tended to describe the universe as a giant clockwork, the body as a machine, and, more recently, the mind as a computer. These are all aspects of the degree to which we have come to live in a technological age.
Wayne Grady is the author of fourteen books of science and natural history and the editor of six anthologies of short stories. His translations of Daniel Poliquin's Black Squirrel and Francine D'Amour's Return from Africa were shortlisted for the Governor General's Literary Award, and he is the winner of the John Glassco Prize and the Governor General's Literary Award for Translation. He lives near Kingston, Ontario, with his wife, novelist Merilyn Simonds.
Jane Springer is the author of Genocide, part of the Groundwork Guides series for which she is also the series editor. She is a consultant in international development and has lived and worked in Mozambique and India. She is the author of Listen to Us: The World's Working Children and translator of the Portuguese-language books Nest Egg and Tales from the Amazon. Jane Springer lives in Toronto.