ERIC Number: ED400573
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1995-Nov
Technology, Media Monopolies and Curriculum.
Beadle, Mary E.
Neil Postman describes the United States in the late 20th century as the only "technopoly" (a society that has totally surrendered to technology, information, and science) in the world, and he asks educators to resist technopoly by changing curriculum. In his book "Technopoly," Postman proposes that cultures may be classified into 3 types: traditional, technocracies, and technopolies. What is most valued in a technopoly is information, not only data and facts but all types of communication. In a technopoly, methods of science are applied to mass media and, according to Postman, determine the way people perceive reality. In the global marketplace of mass media, the United States entertainment industry dominates as an information sender. Personal experience indicates that mass media have an effect on people's perception of life in the United States that has a subtle influence on face-to-face communication. Studies consistently indicate that continued use of information obtained through the mass media, particularly television and film, influences perceptions. Postman states that in the evolution to a technopoly social institutions, church, family, government, no longer control information. Postman suggests that everyone needs to resist technopoly and that curriculum in schools should change to help people resist. Educators should ask and seek answers to important questions about the kind of society desired, how to get there, and what role the mass media would have in an ideal community. (Contains 10 references.) (RS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A