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In this essay I will examine technological utopias, in which scientists and technocratic experts wield the power of knowledge and planning in order to produce a harmonious social order in which conflict has been eliminated (examples are Bacon’s New Atlantis, as well as the various Enlightenment utopias of authors such as Condorcet). I argue that one of the central problems with technological utopias is that they transfer decision-making/organizational authority and power over to experts who implicitly presuppose a monistic and quasi-utilitarian conception of the good. Following Berlin, I contend that the irreconcilable conflict of certain core values inevitably undoes any attempt to definitively resolve social antagonisms using scientific/technological means.


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18 Jul 2022
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  • Subject
    • History, Anthropology, & Philosophy

  • Event date
    • 2 March 2014

  • Date submitted

    18 July 2022

  • Keywords
  • Additional information
    • Author Biography:

      Wade Roberts is an assistant professor in the philosophy department at Juniata College. His primary research interests are Continental and social/political philosophy.