Development is the strategy of Occidental Imperialism. It becomes a moral imperative to cultivate the wilderness. Spanos 2k [William Spanos, America’s Shadow, pg. 40-41]
What, however, the panoptic Eurocentric eye of the Enlightenment comes to see in the space within this reconfigured trope of the circle is no longer — or at least not exclusively — a vast "uninhabited" emptiness, in which the natives do not count as human beings. Rather, it comes primarily to see an uninformed terra incognita. As the texts of early European travel writers (and social historians) invariably characterize this amorphous and ahistorical "new world," the European panoptic gaze falls on an "unimproved" space. As the privative prefix emphatically suggests, it is a space-time in which everything in it — flora, fauna, minerals, animals, and, later, human beings — is seen and encoded not so much as threatening, though that meaning is clearly there as well, as wasteful or uneconomical and thus as an untended fallow (female) terrain calling futurally for the beneficial ministrations ofthe (adult, male) center.72 The predestinarian metaphorics of the circle precipitates a whole rhetoric of moral necessity. The "wilderness" as "underdeveloped" or "unimproved" or "uncultivated" (i.e., "unfulfilled" or "uncircular") space must, as the privative prefixes demand, be developed, improved, cultivated (i.e., fulfilled or circularized). Indeed, it is the wilderness's destiny. From this representation of the colonial Others as mired in and by their own chaotic primordial condition, one of the most debilitating of which is unproductive perpetual war, it is an easy step to representing them, as American writers and historians did the Indian race in the nineteenth century, as either self-doomed73 or appealing to the European to save them from themselves by way of imposing his peace on their multiply wasteful strife.74 Referring to John Barrow's representative (enlightened) "anticonquest" narrative about his travels as an agent of the British colonial governor in the interior of the Cape Colony at the end of the eighteenth century, Mary Louise Pratt writes:
Link – Technology
The 1AC’s frontier discourse surrounding technology innovation is rooted in western ideals of modernity, progress and futurism. This reproduced new violent binaries!
(Joel Dinerstein, Joel Dinerstein is an Associate Professor of English and the Director of American Studies at Tulane University. He received his Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin , September 2006 Technology and Its Discontents: On the Verge of the Posthuman Dinerstein, Joel, 1958American Quarterly, Volume 58, Number 3, pp. 569-571 (Article) Published by The Johns Hopkins University Press, DA: 6/23/11, CP) Technological progress has long structured Euro-American identity, and it functions as a prop for a muted form of social Darwinism—either “might makes right,” or “survival of the fittest.” Here is the techno-cultural matrix: progress, religion, whiteness, modernity, masculinity, the future. This matrix reproduces an assumed superiority over societies perceived as static, primitive, passive, Communist, terrorist, or fundamentalist(depending on the era). The historian of technology Carroll Pursell points out that “the most significant engine and marker” of modernity is “technology ([which is] almost always seen as masculine in our society),” and that only the West invokes modernity as “a signal characteristic of its self-definition.”8 In Machines as the Measure of Man: Science, Technology, and Ideologies of Western Dominance, Michael Adas traced the rhetoric of technology as it became the primary measure of intelligence, rationality, and the good society, supplanting Christianity for nineteenth-century colonial powers. Weapons, mass production, and communication networks became the fetishes of colonial dominance and racial superiority, which were disseminated (for example) in numerous British best sellers through binary opposites of dominance/passivity: “machine versus human or animal power; science versus superstition and myth; synthetic versus organic; progressive versus stagnant.”9 Such oppositions still inform contemporary theories of Western superiority (e.g., “the clash of civilizations,” “the end of history”). Casting preindustrial (or premodern) peoples as risk-averse and enslaved to obsolescent ideologies—that is, as not progressing—sentences them to second-class status with regard to the future. Sturken and Thomas ask two crucial questions about the role of technology in the American cultural imagination: “Why are emergent and new technologies the screens onto which our culture projects such a broad array of social concerns and desires?,” and consequently, “Why is technology the object of such unrealistic expectations?” I extrapolate the following two answers from the field’s critical framework, by way of Leo Marx, Kasson, Nye, Carey, and Noble (among many others).New technologies help maintain two crucial Euro-American myths: (1) the myth of progress and (2) the myth of white, Western superiority.10In a given society, a myth functions as “a play of past paradigm and future possibility,” according to Laurence Coupe’s study, an act of “remembering and re-creating the sacred narratives of the past.” Progress secularized the idea of Christian redemption by inventing (and instantiating) a near-sacred temporal zone—the future—to contain its man-made utopian dreams. A myth cannot be declared in rational terms; it “resist[s] completion” in order to keep up its “dialectic . . . of memory and desire, of ideology and utopia.” For a myth to have cultural force, it must be unarticulated; it works as “a disclosure rather than . . . a dogma,” an opening into unspoken systems of belief.11 Technological progress is the telos of American culture, the herald of the future, the mythic proof in the nation’s self-righteous pudding. “Nowhere . . . can we find a master narrative so deeply entrenched in popular imagination and popular language as the mythic idea of progress,” notes the historian of technology John Staudenmeier, “particularly technological progress.”
Technological advancements have been used in Frontier rhetoric in order to justify imperial expansion into space
Jordan in 3
John W. Jordan “Kennedy’s Romantic Moon and its Rhetorical Legacy for Space Exploration” Rhetoric & Public Affairs. Vol 6 Num 2. Summer 2003. Pg: 209-231
Having redrawn space through familiar conceptualizations, Kennedy further diminished the immensity ofspace by emphasizing the technology behind the space program and its positive function. This was done by conjoining space exploration with state-of-the-art technology. He informed the audience that if the Mariner probe reached Venus, “we will have literally reached the stars.”Technology had cleared the path, built the bridge, and would also serve as the form of transporta- tion; it was the means by which our reach could extend into the heavens and pull the stars down to Earth. Technological achievements were emphasized in para- graphs 18 through 21, which expanded on the present technological advances brought about by the space program,manifested in everything from Saturn rockets to weather satellites.The massive propulsion rockets received particular attention in the speech to demonstrate that the enormity ofspace could now be traversed safely using these enormous technological wonders. This was an important point for Kennedy to make, for in praising the rockets as a positive and peaceful technology, he redefined them.By placing rockets within the context ofspace exploration,they were transformed into useful objects that inspired awe rather than fear.45Advances in rocket technology could be shown in a peaceful context quite different from the omnipresent Cold War imagery, allowing him to boast of American technological know-how. He stressed that the Saturn rockets were “many times more powerful” than the previous Atlas rockets and were roughly equivalent to “10,000 automobiles with their accelerators on the floor.”Even the buildings in which these rockets were assembled dwarfed previous traditional notions ofarchitecture,as the Saturn rock- ets were assembled in a building “as long as two lengths of this [football] field.” Kennedy’s redefinition ofscale made Earth travel seem almost pedestrian.He solid- ified this point with the claim that the guidance system of the Mariner spacecraft was so accurate it was like “firing a missile from Cape Canaveral and dropping it in this stadium between the 40-yard lines.”The sheer scale and power of these new technologies compelled us to reach toward outer space, for space was the only des- tination that presented enough ofa challenge for the audience’s adventurous spirit and their wonderful new tools.
The 1AC’s use of technology leaves a legacy of imperial violence because it is still technology from below. The use of technology to “look down” on earth only recreates the same violence as on earth because we only see it as a new canvass for the same old painting
Redfield in ’93
(Peter, A.B. Harvard University 1987, M.A. U.C. Berkeley 1989, Ph.D. U.C. Berkeley 1995, Anthropology of Science and Technology; Humanitarianism and Human Rights; Colonial History and Postcolonial Relations; Ethics, Nonprofit Organizations and Transnational Experts; Europe; French Guiana; Uganda, “The Half-Life Empire in Outer Space page 810-812, MDA)
What then to say about those space enthusiasts, dreaming of their extraterrestrial networks? By surpassing the globe would they really leave it behind? In an essay first written in the midst of Space Race fervor, Hannah Arendt (1978 ) wonders what the “conquest of space” might do to the “stature of man”. Her hope is for a renewed appreciation of the earth as “the centre and home of mortal men”, and a recognition of “factual morality” among the conditional limits framing science. Her fear is of a reduction of technology to a biological process, and language to the “extreme and in itself meaningless formalism of mathematical signs” which would not merely lower the “stature of man” but actively destroy it [Arendt (1978 ): 279-80]. Amid its anachronistic language and European humanist frame, the essay identifies a crucial aspect of space exploration: the promise of achieving an Archimedean point of sorts, a position beyond the earth from which to survey the planet itself, a location with clear relational implications. The prospect worries Arendt, for she sees the promise as an incomplete one that will be falsely read as an affirmation of power and a transcendence of limits. Once beyond the atmosphere, humans would imagine themselves to be beyond themselves, and thus lose sight of where they are.Quoting Franz Kafka, Arendt writes that man “found the Archimedean point, but he uses it against himself; it seems he was permitted to find it only under this condition” [Arendt (1978 ):278]. Four decades later, thinking about a small road in the tropics, Arendt’s fears read somewhat differently. For all of the dreams of the world’s space agencies, the mythic allusions in rocket and programme names, the indomitable enthusiasm of space aficionados, the multiple imagination of science fiction, and even the farce of the worlds’ first space tourist, human spaceflight has yet really to move beyond the earth. In the absence of the sure reflection of either a god or an alien above, meaning is still measured from below. The point is not simply abstract. As the sky fills with satellites, the prospect of extraterrestrial perspective actively materializes allowing the production and consumption of distinctly global images in support of such diverse causes as corporate profits, environmental awareness and sustainable development. At the same time, however, the import of Kafka’s phrase shifts along with the expanding field of vision.For whom and against whom has this partial transcendence been used – which humans and nonhumans, when and where? Surely the legacy of imperial vision must be incorporated in the act of looking down. Surely past perspectives of differing elevations, past patterns of contest and association are not simply translated or combined.Under the bright light of a higher lens, the “man” of Arendt’s essay splits asunder, not only through the acceleration of instrumental reason ad its lurch beyond the atmosphere, but also through the widening and lowering of a frame of historical reference to include human difference. However much astronauts may still try to birth a singular human in the sky, that new being faces multiple demands of ancestry.
Technological innovations have created a universal narrative concerning United States Space exploration. These notions of nation building have justified imperial expansion
(Asif A. Siddiqi assistant professor of history at Fordham University and member of advisory board at Shahjalal University of Science and Technology. wrote Challenge to Apollo: The Soviet Union and the Space Race, 1945-1974 is widely considered to be the best English-language history of the Soviet space program in print and was identified by the Wall Street Journal as "one of the five best books" on space exploration. This book was later published in paperback in two separate volumes, Sputnik and the Soviet Space Challenge and The Soviet Space Race with Apollo. Competing Technologies, National(ist) Narratives, and Universal Claims: Toward a Global History of Space Exploration, Technology and Culture, Volume 51, Number 2, April 2010, pg 425-426, DA:6/21/11, CP)
Ask historians of technology from the United States to name the most important event in the history of space exploration, and they will cite the Apollo Moon landing in 1969. Pose the same question to their Russian counterparts and they will recall the flight of Yuri Gagarin in 1961. American historians of spaceflight (or indeed, historians of technology) would be surprised to learn that few beyond the United States remember or care about Apollo, while Russians find it startling that few Americans have even heard of Gagarin. Two nations that have engaged in essentially the same endeavor—to take leave of this planet—have fundamentally dissimilar perspectives on the same set of events. That history is told differently in different places by different people is hardly surprising. The same historical episode, seen from two different national cultures, can engender entirely different national claims, assertions that are contingent on a complex matrix of deeply ingrained cultural assumptions. What is unique about the received history of spaceflight is that its claims—such as those for Gagarin or Apollo—have been imbued with a certain universal, even anthropological, significance. In each nation’s canon of space history, Gagarin’s flight and Neil Armstrong’s first step have been compared with the evolutionary movement of life from water to land. This simultaneous invocation of national aspirations and universal significance is what distinguishes the conflicting national narratives of space history from other more common Rashomon-like views of history. Essential to this tension between the more specific narrative and the universal claim in the case of the space program is the perceived importance of technological prowess in the construction of a national identity.While the notion that scientific prowess is a constitutive element of national identity goes back to at least the seventeenth century, the Enlightenment strongly reinforced this relationship in the European context.By the late nineteenth century, with the fruits of the Industrial Revolution evident and the appearance of a distinct category of technology, many of the rationales used in favor of science were even more persistently applied to technology and its essential role in the enterprise of nation-building.2 And, as the European colonial project reached its peak, the discussion over modern technology became inseparable from empire-building; technology, in effect, became a dominant metric of modernity—Michael Adas’s “measure of men.”3By the early twentieth century, and especially in the light of experiences duringWorldWar I, technology assumed a fundamental role in the projection of national prowess, a role that was now further complicated by the specter of international competition for global dominance—through science, technology, war, and imperial holdings. In his study of the relationship between technology and modernity in early-twentieth-century Britain and Germany, Bernhard Rieger notes that “[t]echnological innovations not only underpinned the competitiveness of national economies as well as both countries’ military might; a large range of artifacts also became national symbols and prestige objects that signaled international leadership in a variety of engineering disciplines.
Technological advancements are a guise for imperialism
(Carlson, W. Bernard. August 2007, Diversity and Progress How Might We Picture Technology across Global Cultures? Carlson, W. Bernard. Comparative Technology Transfer and Society, Volume 5, Number2 , pp. 135-136 (Article), Published by The Johns Hopkins University Press, DA: 6/22/11, CP)
Around 1500 BCE, the Hittites perfected the art of making iron weapons that were superior to the bronze weapons used by other groups; capitalizing on their technological advantage, the Hittites conquered much of the ancient Mediterranean world, only to be defeated as the Greeks and other groups mastered the secrets of working iron (Geselowitz, 2005). Yet other technological developments are pursued in order to maintain the status quo; in a landmark study, David Noble (1984) argued that U.S. managers and engineers in the 1950s introduced automated machine tools in aircraft production in order to curb the power of unionized workers. Hence,in talking about technology and ideology, we need to be aware that there is often conflict among groups about how to use technology. Moreover, these conflicts may take place at a variety of levels: locally, between groups in an organization (managers and workers); regionally(say, between townspeople and farmers);nationally(the aristocracy versus the peasants);or globally(as between the Hittites and their rivals). While there is frequently conflict and ferment within a given culture about specific technological choices, I would suggest that over time, cultures may settle on a general ideology that tends to privilege one function— abundance, order, or meaning—over the others. As one group comes to dominate a particular society, so it articulates an ideology that justifies its authority and explains how the group plans to use technology to create and maintain its vision of the good society. Assuming that a culture has one prevailing technological ideology is, to be sure, a vast simplification of how messy and complex societies are. However, I would argue that it is a necessary simplification if we want to take a first pass at comparing how different cultures have their own distinctive technologies. We need to make this assumption if we want to move from the intracultural approach taken by most historians of technology, to considering, at least in this essay, a crosscultural perspective.3 One example of how a culture may develop a distinct technological ideology can be seen in the absolute monarchies of early modern Europe (Carlson, 2005, 5:32–34). In these states, the king and the aristocracy took the view that the most important thing was to maintain political order, that society should be structured as a hierarchy of classes. The ruling elite expected that all aspects of the economy and culture would be used to maintain this particular political order. As Louis XIV proclaimed, “L’etat, c’est moi.”To secure the economic resources needed to sustain their political and military power, several states pursued mercantilist policies aimed at capturing wealth from colonies in Asia, Africa, and the Americas and bringing it back to Europe. In France, roads and canals were built to permit the king to exert military power throughout the realm, and much innovation was devoted to creating high-quality textiles and porcelain for the aristocracy at royal factories located at the Louvre palace. Both the king and nobility of old-regime France used consumption and display as a means for underpinning their power. Here the dominant idea is that if a culture is able to get the right political and social order, then it has achieved the good society.4 To suggest that the ancien régime of France privileged social and political order over abundance and meaning is not to deny that there was debate within that society. Among the nobles, there were some who pushed for the development of military technology and territorial expansion, while others concentrated on conspicuous consumption on a grand scale, drawing on new technologies to create elaborate houses and splendid gardens. American views technology as a tool for exploitation and Western domination
(Joel Dinerstein, Joel Dinerstein is an Associate Professor of English and the Director of American Studies at Tulane University. He received his Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin , September 2006 Technology and Its Discontents: On the Verge of the Posthuman Dinerstein, Joel, 1958American Quarterly, Volume 58, Number 3, pp. 569-571 (Article) Published by The Johns Hopkins University Press, DA: 6/23/11, CP) Immediately after 9/11, a Middle East correspondent for The Nation summarized the coming war on terrorism as “[their] theology versus [our] technology, the suicide bomber against the nuclear power.”1 His statement missed the point: technology is the American theology. For Americans, it is not the Christian God but technology that structures the American sense of power and revenge, the nation’s abstract sense of well-being, its arrogant sense of superiority, and its righteous justification for global dominance. In the introduction to Technological Visions, Marita Sturken and Douglas Thomas declare that “in the popular imagination, technology is often synonymous with the future,” butit is more accurate to say that technology is synonymous with faith in the future—both in the future as a better world and as one in which the United States bestrides the globe as a colossus.2 Technology has long been the unacknowledged source of European and Euro-American superiority within modernity,and its underlying mythos always traffics in what James W. Carey once called “secular religiosity.”3 Lewis Mumford called the American belief system “mechano-idolatry” as early as 1934; a few years later he deemed it our “mechano-centric religion.” David F. Noble calls this ideology “the religion of technology” in a work of the same name that traces its European roots to a doctrine that combines millenarianism, rationalism, and Christian redemption in the writings of monks, explorers, inventors, and NASA scientists. If we take into account the functions of religion and not its rituals, it is not a deity who insures the American future but new technologies: smart bombs in the Gulf War, Viagra and Prozac in the pharmacy, satellite TV at home. It is not social justice or equitable economic distribution that will reduce hunger, greed, and poverty, but fables of abundance and the rhetoric of technological utopianism. The United States is in thrall to “techno-fundamentalism,” in Siva Vaidhyanathan’s apt phrase; to Thomas P. Hughes, “a god named technology has possessed Americans.” Or, as public policy scholar Edward Wenk Jr. sums it up, “we are . . . inclined to equate technology with civilization [itself ].”
Technology as an abstract concept functions as a white mythology. Yet scholars of whiteness rarely engage technology as a site of dominant white cultural practices (except in popular culture), and scholars of technology often sidestep the subtext of whiteness within this mythos. The underlying ideology and cultural practices of technology were central to American studies scholarship in its second and third generations, but the field has marginalized this critical framework; it is as if these works of (mostly) white men are now irrelevant to the field’s central concerns of race, class, gender, sexuality, and ethnic identity on the one hand, and power, empire, and nation on the other. In this essay I will integrate some older works into the field’s current concerns to situate the current posthuman discourse within an unmarked white tradition of technological utopianism that also functions as a form of social evasion. By the conclusion, I hope to have shown that the posthuman is an escape from the panhuman. This is an important moment to grapple with the relationship of technology and whiteness since many scientists, inventors, and cognitive philosophers currently hail the arrival of the “posthuman.” This emergent term represents the imminent transformation of the human body through GNR technologies— G for genetic engineering or biotechnology, N for nanotechnology, and R for robotics. “The posthuman,” as N. Katherine Hayles defined it in How We Became Posthuman (2000),“implies not only a coupling with intelligent machines but a coupling so intense and multifaceted that it is no longer possible to distinguish meaningfully between the biological organism and the informational circuits in which the organism is enmeshed.” To be reductive, the posthuman envisions the near future as one in which humans are cyborgs—in which the human organism is, for all practical purposes, a networked being composed of multiple human-machine interfaces. Underlying cultural beliefs in technological determinism matched with the inalienable right of consumer desire will soon produce what even cautious critics call “a social transformation” at the level of the individual body, as consumers purchase genetic enhancements(to take one example). In other words, steroids, cloning, gene mapping, and surgical implants are just the tip of an iceberg that, when it melts, will rebaptize human beings as cyborgs.5 Technological advancements are meant to civilize and westernize other societies. Western notions of technological progress determine many power relations
(Carlson, W. Bernard. August 2007, Diversity and Progress How Might We Picture Technology across Global Cultures? Carlson, W. Bernard. Comparative Technology Transfer and Society, Volume 5, Number2 , pp. 128-155 (Article), Published by The Johns Hopkins University Press, DA: 6/22/11
But it is not just our assumptions about the past that need to be revised. As Japan, China, and India grow in industrial power and reshape global markets in the twenty-first century, historians and policy makers need to rethink their assumptions about technological diffusion.Already, vast amounts of goods and services move East to West, leading one to wonder if before long, ideas and innovation in technology will originate in China and India and then diffuse to Europe and America. Just as the British had to make sense of the Keying sailing up the Thames, so Americans and Europeans now must make sense of the container ships docking at Long Beach and Rotterdam, disgorging thousands of tons of products from China every day (Donovan & Bonney, 2006). To revise our thinking about the movement of technology across history and cultures, we should consider our ideas about diversity and progress as they relate to technology. On the one hand, thanks to the work of anthropologists and historians of technology, we can appreciate the remarkable and diverse ways in which people across a variety of cultures use technology to shape their lives(Edgerton, 2007). From the pyramids of ancient Egypt to the boats of Pacific Islanders to the cell-phone networks established throughout the world today, it is clear that humans have long used technology in response to their needs, wishes, and dreams. Both historical and contemporary examples amply demonstrate that technology is not something uniquely created by the industrialized West; one need only recall that paper, the magnetic compass, and gunpowder all moved East to West along the Silk Road during the late Middle Ages. Hence, we need to recognize diversity in the creation and diffusion of technology. Yet, on the other hand, many strongly believe that technology is essential to improving living conditions around the world. We know that certain kinds of technology can provide food, eliminate disease, and raise the standard of living for millions of people. Many also hope that, by using technology to increase the wealth of a society, people may be inclined toward democracy and freedom and away from violence and prejudice. So given our commitment to using technology for human betterment, how do we go about promoting technological change without falling into the trap of automatically applying Western assumptions? The answer, I believe, is to refine our thinking about diversity and progress. To understand the diversity found in technology, I will suggest in this essay thatwe consider how different societies use technology to pursue material abundance, social order, and cultural meaning.Next, I will look at how societies differ from each other in terms of the vision or ideology they develop about how to use technology to pursue these three goals. Having established the notion of technological ideology, I will then turn tothe issue of progress to argue that the common notion of progress springs from the technological ideology of the industrial West: namely, that the good society is based on material abundance, and second, that different societies may have entirely different notions of change across human history. To think about what we mean by progress in industrialized cultures, I will show how we might diagram human history, looking in particular at the resources mobilized by different cultures across time. Throughout, I will emphasize that the Western notion of technological progress is only one of several ways to think about human history, and that the trajectory of human experience can be viewed in a variety of ways. Indeed, it is only by comparing technological activity across cultures and by thinking critically about the nature of progress that we can succeed in understanding how people use technology to shape their experience.