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1) Jacques Ellul, in “The “Autonomy” of the Technological Phenomenon,” argues that technology imposes a “determinate pattern” on society, that is, he says that technology possess a logic or a will of its own. On his account, the technological phenomenon is independent from, or autonomous of, human reason and will, and thus not only it directs human activities but also it controls science, the political order, economics, culture, society, and our mental powers to serve its demand for more invention, more development, and more control. Robert Heilbroner, in his “Do Machines Make History,” sides with Ellul and says that the technology imposes a determinate pattern of social relations on society, but he also suggests that we may “relegate technology from an undeserved position of primum mobile in history to that of a mediating factor, both acted upon by and acting on the body of society.” He defends a “soft determinism.” In your own view, which one of these versions of technological determinism is tenable? Justify your position (be sure to set out clearly the two positions).

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