The Great Reversal: How We Let Technology Take Control of the Planet

The Great Reversal: How We Let Technology Take Control of the Planet

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David Edward Tabachnick
Foreword by Darin Barney
University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division © 2013
World Rights
200 Pages
ISBN 9780802094698
Published Feb 2013
Online discount: 15%
 $25.95    $22.06
ISBN 9780802092632
Published Feb 2013
Online discount: 25%
 $57.00    $42.75
ebook (EPUB format)
ISBN 9781442664081
Published Feb 2013
Online discount: 27%
Full purchase $25.95

Every day, we are presented with new technologies that can influence human thought and action, such as psychopharmaceuticals, new generation performance enhancing drugs, elective biotechnology, and gastric bypass surgery. Have we let technology go too far in this respect? In The Great Reversal, David Edward Tabachnick contends that this question may not be unique to contemporary society. Through an assessment of the great works of philosophy and politics, Tabachnick explores the largely unrecognized history of technology as an idea.

The Great Reversal takes the reader back to Aristotle’s ancient warning that humanity should never allow technical thinking to cloud our judgment about what makes for a good life. It then charts the path of how we began to relinquish our deeply rooted intellectual and practical capacities that used to allow us to understand and regulate the role of technologies in our lives. As the rise of technology threatens our very humanity, Tabachnick emphasizes that we still may have time to recover and develop these capacities – but we must first decide how far we want to allow technology to determine our existence and our future.

David Edward Tabachnick is an associate professor in and Chair of the Department of Political Science, Philosophy and Economics at Nipissing University.

Foreword by Darin Barney



1 Finding and Enforcing Limits
A Brief Note on the Historical Review

2 Phronesis vs. Techne

3 The Decline of Good Judgment

4 The Rise of Technical Knowledge

5 After the Great Reversal

6 Responses to the Great Reversal

7 Virtue in a Technological Age




The Great Reversal is a well written and insightful book on the meaning and dangers of technology. Boasting remarkable breadth, consistent erudition, and a free-flowing readability, it will appeal to both academic and non-academic readers looking for an interesting synthesis on this topic.’

Leslie Paul Thiele, Department of Political Science, University of Florida