Anthropology professor at Wayne State releases new book, Technology and Culture

August 17, 2009

Detroit, Mich. - The concept of technology has come a long way over the years, as it was once only described through tangible items such as tools and computers. From the perception of ethnographers, a new meaning is brought to the word technology, a meaning that stresses the importance of not only physical things, but also approaches and expectations.

In a new book, Technology and Culture, Allen Batteau, Ph.D., presents an inclusive synopsis of how technology is represented in culture and how cultural values are embodied in technology.

Contrary to former beliefs, the book reveals that culture does create technology. Batteau begins by defining how the words technology and culture resemble two very different concepts, but in the end describes how in the modern world they are not as opposite as they seem and instead are intricately related.

Ultimately, Batteau proves that the relationship of technology and culture are intertwined on the basis of how technology sustains and challenges culture while culture generates and promotes technology.

"Ignorance of culture limits technology projects to narcissistic displays, and likewise, ignorance of technology confines cultural discourse to marginalia," said Batteau. "Technology reforms our social boundaries more durably than it expands our physical limitations."

Allen W. Batteau draws on his experience as an auto mechanic, a computer programmer, an ethnographer, a pilot, and an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Wayne State University to present a richly detailed narrative of the interplay of human aspirations, and the technologies they construct that fulfill and inhibit those desires.

The book will be available at Barnes & Noble, Marwil's and online at For further information about Technology and Culture call (313) 874-7010.

IITC is a multidisciplinary group of medical and organizational anthropologists, psychologists, engineers, nurses, social workers, computer experts and doctors collaborating to understand the cultural aspects of technology use.

Wayne State University is a Carnegie 1 premier research institution offering more than 350 academic programs in 13 schools and colleges to more than 31,000 students.