(Eugene, Oregon: Pickwick Publications, 2013)
Paperback: 128 pages
Technopolis has no end in view other than bigger, faster, newer and more. While giving us many material benefits — at least in the short run — in its wake are spiritual loss, alienation and devastation. These essays by Arthur W. Hunt III — associate professor of communications at the University of Tennessee at Martin — not only evaluate Technopolis, but also seek wisdom to cope with our new human-made environments. Positively stated, they offer suggestions on how to bring us back into balance.
Some of our best wisdom in analysing Technopolis can be found in the voices of the Christian humanists. Unlike Enlightenment humanism, which tends to be human-centred, Christian humanism is concerned with the role of humankind within God’s created order. G.K. Chesterton, T.S. Eliot, J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis represent this tradition. They, and others like them, understood that technological progress with no clear telos obscures what Eliot called “the permanent things”.
Surviving Technopolis means restoring the things closest to us — those old identity-forming institutions of home, church and community.
“The pressures of our current technological trajectory raise the very real possibility of a resurgent Gnosticism in the church. In this lucid collection of essays, Hunt sets the table for a crucial conversation about the significance of the incarnation for a life that is fully human and more humane. Hunt offers a banquet of wisdom in an age of starvation by technological foolishness.”
— Justin Barnard, associate dean for intellectual discipleship and associate professor of philosophy, Union University.
“Arthur Hunt provides a needed guide through the maze of digital technology. Neither technophobic nor technophiliac, Hunt is ‘technosophic’, desirous of understanding technologies and how they shape us as individuals and cultures. His counsel is as sage as it is timely.”
— T. David Gordon, professor of Greek and Religion, Grove City College.
“This collection of essays from Christian media ecologist Arthur Hunt offers a broad and rich overview of some of the more tantalizing intersections of faith, media, culture, and technology…. With influences from Wendell Berry to C.S. Lewis to Jacques Ellul, there is something here for everyone. Hunt’s summary and synthesis of key ideas from media ecology and the Judeo-Christian narrative are accessible, enjoyable, and provocative.”
— Read Mercer Schuchardt, associate professor of communication, Wheaton College.
“In this collection of essays and articles, Arthur Hunt offers a series of comments on modern life. Covering topics from Marshall McLuhan to Middle Earth, this is a fascinating and eclectic example of Christian op-ed, polemic, cultural commentary and provocation. The thoughtful reader will be challenged, stimulated and entertained by this kaleidoscopic tour of modern life.”
— Carl R. Trueman, professor of historical theology and church history, Westminster Theological Seminary.