Publication Date: 01/02/2022 ISBN: 9780367520281 Category:

Against Automation Mythologies

J. Jesse Ramirez

Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publication Date: 01/02/2022 ISBN: 9780367520281 Category:
Paperback / Softback




Inspired by Roland Barthes’s practice of “semioclasm” in Mythologies, this book offers a “technoclasm”; a cultural critique of US narratives, discourses, images, and objects that have transformed the politics of automation into statements of fact about the “rise of the robots”.

Treating automation as an ensemble of technologies and science fictions, this book foregrounds automation’s ideologies, exaggerations, failures, and mystifications of the social value of human labor in order to question accepted and prolific automation mythologies. Jesse Ramirez offers a study of automation that recognizes automation as a technosocial project, that uses the tools of cultural studies and history to investigate the narratives and ideologies that often implicitly frame the automation debate, and that concretely and soberly assesses the technologies that have made the headlines. The case studies featured include some of the most widely cited and celebrated automatic technologies, such as the Baxter industrial robot, the self-driving car, and the Watson AI system.

An ideal resource for anyone interested in or studying emerging technology and society, automation, Marxist cultural theory, cultural studies, science fiction studies, and the cultural history of technology.

Publisher Review

"The achievement of Ramirez's book is to have successfully estranged and demystified hegemonic conceptions of technological 'progress' that still persist in contemporary automation discourses. Simply put, his achievement is to have deautomated hegemonic ways of thinking automation. [...] For anyone interested in critical-utopian thinking, Ramirez's monograph should prove reinvigorating and inspirational: a technoclasm that can blow up automated modes of thinking." -- Miguel Sebastian-Martin, Science Fiction Studies

Book experts at your service

What are you looking for?

A recommendation
Something specific
  • Mr B's Recommendation Station
  • Fill in the three questions below, along with your name and email address, and our book experts will be in touch soon with their personal recommendations

  • I'm after something specific
  • Tell us about the book, author or subject you're looking for, along with your name and email address and our book experts will be in touch as soon as possible