Session 10 (9th Nov)
- Technology as text
Many sociological approaches that will have discussed up to this point seem to suggest that designers will have a necessary impact on the consumption of technologies, hence their importance. In this lecture we will explore the idea that technologies ‘configure the user’ rather than the other way around. This argument comes from the field of technology studies and addresses the ideas of technological and social determinism. In this approach, it is claimed that technology is more like a text than a static object.
NB THIS WILL BE A DOUBLE LECTURE
Bijker, W (1995) Of Bicycles, Bakelite, and Bulbs: Toward a Theory of Sociotechnical Change. Cambridge MIT Press
Grint, K and Woolgar, S (1997) The Machine at Work. Technology, Work and Organisation. Cambridge: Polity Press
Hall, S (1997) (Ed) Representation. Cultural representations and signifying practices. Sage: London.
Hirsch, E (1992) 'The long and the short term of domestic consumption: an ethnographic case study'. In Silverstone, R & Hirsch, E (1992) Consuming Technologies. Media and Information in Domestic spaces. London: Routledge
Julier, G (2000) The Culture of Design. London: Sage (Chapter 3)
Latour, B (1996) Aramis, Or the Love of Technology. Harvard University Press
Mackenzie & Wajcman (1999) The Social Shaping of Technology. Buckingham:.
Open University Press
Miller, D and Slater, D (2000) The Internet. An Ethnographic Approach. New York: Berg. Chapter one and a summary of findings are available online at here
Oudshoorn N and Pinch T (2003) How Users Matter: The Co-Construction of Users and Technologies. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press
Slater, D (1997) Consumer Culture and Modernity. London: Polity
Toffler, A (1980) The Third Wave. London: Collins
Woolgar, S (1996) 'Technologies as Culture Artefacts'. In Dutton, W (Ed.) (1996) Information and Communication Technologies. Visions and Realities. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 87-102
Woolgar, S (1991) 'Configuring the user: the case of usability trials'. In Law, J (Ed) (1991) A Sociology of Monsters. Essays on Power, Technology and Domination. Routledge: London