2 When Innovation Culture Hides Technical Culture

2.1. Introduction

In the early 1980s, Jocelyn De Noblet published a manifesto for the Development of a Technical Culture emphasizing that technology was “doomed to break into” culture [DEN 81, p. 14].

This intrusion probably refers to the thinking of Gilbert Simondon who argued for the “possibility of making the technical being part of culture” since the late 1950s [SIM 12, p. 18]:

Culture is unbalanced because while it recognizes certain objects, like the aesthetic object, granting them the right of citizenship in the world of meanings, it banishes other objects, and in particular technical objects, into a structureless world of things that have no meanings, but only a function, a practical function [SIM 12, p. 10].

This absence of technology in the world of meanings poses numerous problems:

First, it is difficult to see how our technical objects reveal human values and thus shape our cultures. If we hide this, then it becomes difficult to understand how technical objects are also about structure and choice. It also prevents us from seeing how charged with meaning they are.

Secondly, we confine our relationship to technology into a relationship of alienation emanating from the technical object, whereas, according to Gilbert Simondon, the latter resides not in the object itself but in:

this misunderstanding of the machine, which is not an alienation caused by the machine but by a failure to come to an understanding of its ...

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