Science and Technology in Society
This course explores complex relationship between science, technology and society. It is often assumed that science is an activity to ‘reveal’ the truth about the nature, and that technology is an application of the knowledge that science produces. These assumptions tend to lead to the myths that science and technology are ‘neutral’ and ‘asocial’, and hence that their implication for society depend on how we use them. In an academic discipline called Science and Technology Studies, however, it is argued that such assumptions and myths overlook (and sometimes ‘blackbox’) complexity involved in the production of science and technology, and as a result, give us misconceptions of how we – society – ought to manage and live with science and technology. By examining various views and perspectives not only on science and technology but also on society, this course engages critically with the ‘neutrality’ myth of science and technology and challenges the assumptions underlying them. Students will then be invited to make the critical engagement with their own discipline, that is, medicine.