Technology, Values, and Society

Social Forces in Technological Change

by Mitra Das (Author) Shirley Kolack (Author)
©2008 Others 160 Pages
Series: American University Studies , Volume 27


Technology is not value-free; nor does it exist in a vacuum. It needs a social basis – technology is affected by society and influences it. Technology, Values, and Society illustrates this using an examination of cross-cultural case studies representing simple, intermediate, and complex societies. Certain forms of technology exist when conducive values and structures sustain them. However, this relationship is not one-way. Technological changes do precipitate social and value changes. It is impossible to sustain egalitarian values in a society involving technology based on hierarchical relationships. Understanding this connection is vital if we are to keep some control over the way in which technology affects us. This revised edition brings the topic to life for both faculty and students.


ISBN (Softcover)
Technology Value Society Computer technology Hunting Gathering Agricultural Student Case study Hierarchical relationship Control
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, Oxford, Wien, 2008. 146 pp.

Biographical notes

Mitra Das (Author) Shirley Kolack (Author)

The Authors: Mitra Das was born in Delhi, India. She is Professor of Sociology and a former chairperson of the Department of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Her present work grew out of a grant to teach a course on the relationship between society, technology, and values. Her other books include Between Two Cultures: The Case of Cambodian Women in America (Lang, 2007) and From Nation to Nation: A Case Study of Bengali Independence (1981). Das draws on her experiences as a teacher in her courses as a platform for her writing projects. Shirley Kolack was born in Atlanta, Georgia. She is Professor Emeritus and former Chair of the Department of Sociology, University of Massachusetts Lowell. She received her Ph.D. in Sociology-Anthropology from Boston University. She was the principal investigator for a development grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to develop a new curriculum in the area of technology, society, and values at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. This book developed from that project. Her other publication includes A New Beginning: The Jews of Historic Lowell, Massachusetts (1997).


Title: Technology, Values, and Society