Book Review: Don Ihde – Heidegger’s Technologies Postphenomenological Perspectives
I have come to regret that dedication . . . My aversion was not only because of the moral discrepancy, which does arise by equating gas chamber victims and biotechnological corn, but also because I saw that for Heidegger, every technology ended up with exactly the same output or analysis.
The book under review, an impressive collection of interesting studies (some of which have been published previously), supplements the negative sentiments of aversion with a profound critique of Heidegger’s philosophy of technology. The range of Ihde’s discussion is remarkable: ideas about the genesis and history of the philosophy of technology; a view about the rise of techno-romanticism; a re-reading of “the Heidegger corpus” from the empirical perspective of science-technology studies; a comparative analysis of the variants upon “autonomous technology” put forward by Heidegger, Jacques Ellul and Lewis Mumford; an explanation of the sense in which Heidegger’s philosophy of technology is an existential-phenomenological enterprise; a rebuttal of the arguments for the thesis that modern technology is applied science; a search for a rationale for differentiating between handwork technology and scientific technology; and the doctrine that modern technology is both historically and ontologically prior to modern science.