1st Edition

Using Words and Things
Language and Philosophy of Technology





ISBN 9781138694163
Published June 15, 2017 by Routledge
296 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations

USD $155.00

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Book Description

This book offers a systematic framework for thinking about the relationship between language and technology and an argument for interweaving thinking about technology with thinking about language. The main claim of philosophy of technology—that technologies are not mere tools and artefacts not mere things, but crucially and significantly shape what we perceive, do, and are—is re-thought in a way that accounts for the role of language in human technological experiences and practices. Engaging with work by Wittgenstein, Heidegger, McLuhan, Searle, Ihde, Latour, Ricoeur, and many others, the author critically responds to, and constructs a synthesis of, three "extreme", idealtype, untenable positions: (1) only humans speak and neither language nor technologies speak, (2) only language speaks and neither humans nor technologies speak, and (3) only technology speaks and neither humans nor language speak. The construction of this synthesis goes hand in hand with a narrative about subjects and objects that become entangled and constitute one another. Using Words and Things thus draws in central discussions from other subdisciplines in philosophy, such as philosophy of language, epistemology, and metaphysics, to offer an original theory of the relationship between language and (philosophy of) technology centered on use, performance, and narrative, and taking a transcendental turn.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction: Words and Things



Part I: Humans Speak (Subjects versus Objects)



Chapter 2: Speaking with and about Technology



Chapter 3: Giving Meaning to Technology: A Searlean Social Ontology of Technological Artefacts



Part II: Language Speaks (Subjects Change Objects)



Chapter 4: Language and the Social Construction of Artefacts



Chapter 5: All about Language: Postmodern Interpretations, or the Muting of Humans and Technology



Part III: Technology Speaks (Objects Change Subjects)



Chapter 6: What Technology Tells Us (To Do) (Part 1): Media, Artefacts, Networks



Chapter 7: What Technology Tells Us (To Do) (Part 2): Narrative Technologies, or Interpreting and Materializing Ricoeur



Part IV: Humans, Language, and Technology Speak (Subjects and Objects Entangled)



Chapter 8: Using and Performing with Words and Things

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Author(s)

Biography

Mark Coeckelbergh is Professor of Philosophy of Media and Technology at the Department of Philosophy, University of Vienna, and (part-time) Professor of Technology and Social Responsibility at De Montfort University, UK. His publications include Growing Moral Relations (2012), Human Being @ Risk (2013), Environmental Skill (2015), Money Machines (2015), New Romantic Cyborgs (2017), and numerous articles in the area of philosophy of technology.