This book offers a unique analysis of how ideas about science and technology in the public and scientific imaginations (in particular about maths, logic, the gene, the brain, god, and robots) perpetuate the false reality that values and politics are separate from scientific knowledge and its applications. These ideas are reinforced by cultural myths about free will and individualism. Restivo makes a compelling case for a synchronistic approach in the study of these notoriously 'hard' cases, arguing that their significance reaches far beyond the realms of science and technology, and that their sociological and political ramifications are of paramount importance in our global society. This innovative work deals with perennial problems in the social sciences, philosophy, and the history of science and religion, and will be of special interest to professionals in these fields, as well as scholars of science and technology studies.
Sal Restivo is Adjunct Professor of Technology, Culture and Society at NYU Tandon School of Engineering, USA and former Professor of Sociology, Science, and Information Technology at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, USA.
Prologue, Part 1. Requiem for Plato and the Gods.- Prologue, Part 2. The Postmodern Context.- Chapter 1. The Science of Society.- Chapter 2. What about the Gene and What about the Brain?.- Chapter 3. The Social Lives of Minds and Brains.- Chapter 4. Thinking Machines.- Chapter 5. God and Society.- Chapter 6. The Social Construction of Mathematics.- Chapter 7. What Can a Sociologist Say about Logic?.- Chapter 8. Conclusion.- Appendix 1. Moments in the History of the Science of Society.- Appendix 2. Modelling the Social Brain.