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Alan Jacobs - the three big stories of modernity | TextPatterns July 2015
So far there have been three widely influential stories about the rise of modernity: the Emancipatory, the Protestant, and the Neo-Thomist. (..) all these narrators of modernity see our own age as one in which the consequences of 500-year-old debates conducted by philosophers and theologians are still being played out. I think all of these narratives are wrong. They are wrong because they are the product of scholars in universities who overrate the historical importance and influence of other scholars in universities, and because they neglect ideas that connect more directly with the material world. All of these grands recits should be set aside, and they should not immediately be replaced with others, but with more particular, less sweeping, and more technologically-oriented stories. The technologies that Marshall McLuhan called "the extensions of Man" are infinitely more important for Man's story, for good and for ill, than the debates of the schoolmen and interpreters of the Bible. Instead of grand narratives of the emergence of The Modern we need something far more plural: technological histories of modernity.
Instapaper  cultural_history  cultural_capital  modernity  technology  Tech/Culture  social_theory  intellectual_history  intellectual_history-distorted  religious_history  Thomism-21stC  Reformation  Renaissance  Enlightenment  Enlightenment_Project  Enlightenment-ongoing  modernity-emergence  material_culture  economic_history  Great_Divergence  Industrial_Revolution  colonialism  Military_Revolution  Scientific_Revolution  consumer_revolution  technology-history  historiography  medicine  public_health  public_sphere  public_goods  media  print_culture  history_of_science  history_of_book  history-and-social_sciences  narrative  narrative-contested  from instapaper
july 2015 by dunnettreader

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