Günther Anders – Shame and Apparatus
In this chapter is presented the pessimistic diagnosis of Gunther Anders about the world dominated by technology. Anders observes: (a) the diffusion of a new sentiment amongst human beings, occurring in parallel with a frighteningly rapid rise in techno-science. He describes this different emotional mood (Stimmung) as a sense of “Promethean shame” (prometeische Schäme) that describes it as a hitherto unknown, but increasingly widespread sense of shame that man experiences when he sees the embarrassingly high quality of the objects that he himself has constructed; (b) the concrete realization in the present time of the by Anders is called the “mega-machine” that can be configured like a sort of huge ideal state in which every human and no human component serves the functional needs of the whole. According to Anders, the fusion of each particular apparatus into a single, large apparatus marks the achievement of a new ontology. From the point of view of the apparatuses, the essential meaning of things becomes the one according to which “being” means “being part of an apparatus”.