By David F. Noble
"An terribly distinctive and heavily argued exam of the institutional units that got here to hyperlink administration and engineering."--The New Republic
"One of the easiest books of the final decade....It has that infrequent stability: quiet, cumulative energy with bolts of lightning each few pages."--William Appleman Williams, Oregon country University
"One of the phenomenal works of radical social technology of the 1970s."--Monthly Review
Read Online or Download America by Design: Science, Technology, and the Rise of Corporate Capitalism PDF
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Extra resources for America by Design: Science, Technology, and the Rise of Corporate Capitalism
3 Of the new industries which emerged between 1880 and 1920 and transformed the nature of social production in America, only two grew out of the soil of scientific rather than traditional craft knowledge: the electrical and chemical industries. The creation of both presupposed and stimulated advances in physics and chemistry and would have been unthinkable without some basic knowledge about the behavior of atoms, molecules, gases, light, magnetism, and electricity. Of the two, the electrical industry arose first, in the 1880s; by the turn of the century it had become a major force in the world of production, dominated by a handful of large, powerful, and dynamic corporations.
Insofar as social analysis merely replicates such a perception of reality without penetrating beneath the apparent technological necessity, it further contributes to the general mystification and reinforces the particular social relations which are thereby obscured. This study is an attempt to reintegrate the mystified conception of technology with the actual activities from which it has been abstracted, to reveal it as the human enterprise that it is, and can be, by substituting history for metaphor.
The machine itself makes no demands and holds out no promises: it is the human spirit that makes demands and keeps promises. Lewis Mumford, Technics and Civilization Contents Cover Title Page Copyright Dedication Epigraph Foreword by Christopher Lasch Acknowledgments Introduction Part One Technology as Social Production / Industry, Education, and Engineers 1 The Wedding of Science to the Useful Arts—I / The Rise of Science-Based Industry 2 The Wedding of Science to the Useful Arts—II / The Development of Technical Education 3 The Wedding of Science to the Useful Arts—III / The Emergence of the Professional Engineer 4 Preservation Through Change / Corporate Engineers and Social Reform Part Two Corporate Reform as Conscious Social Production 5 Laying the Foundation / Scientific and Industrial Standardization 6 The Corporation as Inventor / Patent-Law Reform and Patent Monopoly 7 Science for Industry / The Organization of Industrial and University Research 8 Technology as People / The Industrial Process of Higher Education—I 9 Technology as People / The Industrial Process of Higher Education—II 10 A Technology of Social Production / Modern Management and the Expansion of Engineering Epilogue Notes A Note About the Author Foreword The notion of technological determinism has dominated popular understanding of the industrial revolution.