Philosophy of technology

  • Friedrich Rapp
Part of the International Institute of Philosophy / Institut International de Philosophie book series (COPH, volume 2)


Only a few decades ago the contribution made by modern technology to civilisation was on the whole eagerly accepted, and hence no actual need for an investigation of the philosophical problems of technology was seen. There were, of course, some exceptions. But they did not attract much attention. Until the Second World War a concern for modern technology was more present in the intuitive understanding of artists and poets than in the rational thinking of philosophers. Surveys of the treatment of technology in literature are given by Marx [1], Sussman [2], and Sachsse [3], (Vol. 2). The continuous technological progress since the Industrial Revolution seemed to confirm the Rationalist idea of the domination of man over nature and the optimism of the Age of Enlightenment. As Koselleck [4] documents, the biological and social theories of evolution of the 19th century fostered the expectation of unlimited material growth and also, by derivation, of social, cultural, and even moral progress for mankind, to be achieved by means of science, technology and industry.


Technology Assessment Technological Progress Modern Technology Technological Action Philosophical Problem 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, The Hague/Boston/London 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Friedrich Rapp
    • 1
  1. 1.Technische Universität BerlinGermany

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