Questions from the 10-28-1982 Meeting, 1982, page 2
Questions, p.2 At How have women responded to the unintended consequences of technological change? What is the underlying value system that allows us to feel that technological change is "progress"? What would be a feminist perspective on "progress"? How does Weber's notion of the "iron cage of rationalism" relate to women's emo- tional lives in this technological era? Is there an episode in the history of technological change that could illustrate well the contradictions with which we seem to grapple: a) the value neutrality of science b) gendering of technology The framework of the conference would be to ask what have been the differential impacts of various new technologies on women (as distinct from men) since WWII. This extremely broad questions could then be broken down into categories, ie: -— How have technological changes affected women's work in the home? Women's work in the factory? Women's white collar work? -- What impact has new medical technology had on women? —- How has changing technology changed the culture and entertainment that are are available to women? Might we ponder the significance of steam ironing to Phil Donahue? Cuisinarting to All My Children? -What has been the political impact of technological change in communications for women: i.e., the electronic church? Have men,but not women, been able to use communications for organizing, networking, propagandizing? Any of the above questions, now phrased"since WWII" could be re-phrasedto ask about future likelihoods? It would be useful to have a historian of science (or a sociologist) discuss the issue of women as scientists: Is it true that women have been less involved in the creation of "science" than in the creation of other intellectual and cultural pursuits in the public sphere? Why? Possible correctives? Along similar lines, but more narrowly: Who does have/will have access to the know- ledge to create computers? To utilize computers? Does this break down along class lines? Gender lines? Race lines? If women get technological skills, will they get technological obs? What will be the role of technology in organizing the work place so that traditional sex roles are or are not maintained? What do we as women cherish in our ways of relating to the earth and to each other that we wish to have technology facilitate, rather than denigrate? Why haven't technologies fostered cooperation rather than physical isolation? equality rather than dominance? subject vs. object orientation? the Thursday November 11 planning committee meeting, Bettina will present a pro- posed framework for the morning session of the conference which will provide the focus for the discussion.