Moralizing TechnologyUnderstanding and Designing the Morality of Things

Moralizing TechnologyUnderstanding and Designing the Morality of Things

Peter-Paul Verbeek

Print publication date: 2013

ISBN: 9780226852911

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

Abstract

Technology permeates nearly every aspect of our daily lives. Cars enable us to travel long distances, mobile phones help us to communicate, and medical devices make it possible to detect and cure diseases. However, these aids to existence are not simply neutral instruments, they give shape to what we do and how we experience the world. Because technology plays such an active role in shaping our daily actions and decisions, it is crucial, this book argues, that we consider the moral dimension of technology. As such, the book offers an in-depth study of the ethical dilemmas and moral issues surrounding the interaction of humans and technology. Drawing from Heidegger and Foucault, as well as from philosophers of technology such as Don Ihde and Bruno Latour, it locates morality not just in the human users of technology but in the interaction between us and our machines. The book cites concrete examples, including some personal ones, and argues for the morality of things. The book forces us all to consider the virtue of new inventions and to rethink the rightness of the products we use every day.