The Determinist Image of Technology in the Textbooks of Secondary Education. A Critical Study from Sociology of Knowledge

Jesús Romero Moñivas


Starting from an assumption within the sociology of knowledge that reality is built and reproduced socially from symbolic universes, especially language, this article tries to show what image of technology exists within the educational community and, especially, in textbooks for¡ secondary education. A dual methodology is applied: on the one hand, quantitative analysis of content and, on the other, qualitative analysis of speech. The empirical data produced show that the textbooks reflect a tendency toward technological determinism, attributing to technology autonomous, quasi-personal and creative characteristics, and putting the technical (positively valued) at the core of education. The paper concludes by outlining three general consequences of this conception of technology respect to professors, students and socio-political reality. Viewed from a critical perspective and with reference to liberation pedagogy, it is argued that the underlying technological determinism image of education could disable the critical ideal and inhibit the task of transforming the reality of teaching.

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