With our approach of the “Critical Theory of Patriarchy” we understand by “technology” not only certain practical activities that are in a way self – evident or “neutral”, as is mostly the case. On the contrary, we comprehend technology in patriarchy as the development of a general method for the treatment of everything and everybody, as it was happening with so-called “alchemy” already in antiquity. The method is “methodos”, the way that has to be taken, and therefore a “theory” about this “way” as well, because it is supposed to lead to a certain goal. From our point of view, patriarchal techniques and technologies thus are never “neutral”.
We are characterizing patriarchal techniques/technologies as truly different from others, as for instance matriarchal ones, and as opposed to the latter, because they do not accept the way things or living beings are appearing on their own, and do not cooperate with them or treat them properly. On the contrary, patriarchal techniques always try to violently transform what is found into its opposite. This way they are pursuing a certain, and always destructive, aim.
We define this aim generally as a step in the direction of a positively perceived utopia of a future civilization that is approaching us. This utopia and the steps to its realization have become widely unconscious, so that people do not recognize them as an ir-rational project of a systematic “Hatred of all Life”. They have instead coined most of our thinking, feeling, acting and wishing and have sunk into our subconscious. These steps for the realization of the utopia of a supposedly “better and higher” world that have to be undertaken by patriarchal technologies, are pre-supposed to everything else and therefore seem to be self-evident and “natural”.
Instead of recognizing the destruction of life and even of the life-systems of the planet itself that are the consequence, especially modern technology is regarded as an indispensable means for the progress of the “development of the productive forces”. This is the reason why modern civilization is not seen yet as “capitalist patriarchy” which is leading to the most extensive and systematic destruction of the world in history. It is, instead only perceived on the level of its economic performance of plundering nature, exploiting labour power, or treating women as a “commodity”. It remains invisible or is welcome as “progress”, though, that beyond exploitation and appropriation it is the “alchemical transformation” and finally abolition of live and nature in favour of a manmade artificial world, which is at stake.
We will start with matriarchal magic and alchemy, go on with handicraft and arts to machine technology and thus to patriarchal black magic and alchemy… Techniques as part of the relationship with Nature are related to activities of, with and through human beings as the “internal nature”, and with matter / life forms as “external nature”. They reach from the micro-cosmos of the atom to the macro-cosmos of the Planet… from matter to spirit and vice versa…body and soul.
Responsible for this issue: Claudia von Werlhof – email@example.com
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…as well as comments on BOOMERANG 2, “Nature under Patriarchy”, fall 2016.
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