Chapter

Focal Things and Focal Practices

Lawrence Haworth

in Technology and the Good Life?

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print November 2000 | ISBN: 9780226333861
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226333885 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226333885.003.0004
Focal Things and Focal Practices

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This chapter examines the relationship between focal practices and focal things. The chapter's meditation on things and practices, with its thoughtfully selected and well-developed examples, appeals to those who might not know Borgmann's work firsthand and deepens and clarifies, with its subtle distinctions, any sophisticated reader's understanding of Borgmann's account of this matter. Technology's relationship with democracy is at best an uneasy one, especially given Borgmann's claim that our modern devices are not mere value-neutral instruments. Thus, technology may play a greater role in determining the character of the good life than any of the founders of the liberal democratic tradition imagined.

Keywords: focal practice; focal thing; Borgmann's work; technology; democracy; modern devices; good life

Chapter.  7047 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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