Whether Technologies not only influence but actually determine social customs and ethics

Essay by poplary September 2006

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Though technologies might influence social development, customs and ethics, it can even affect individual behaviors. However, it's hard to state technology is the decisive factor of social customs and ethics which are too complicated to be determined only by one element.

Admittedly, the human society and science has developed in a tremendous speed during the past century due to the development of technology. Those great inventions have played a key role in our daily life. For example, the invention of airplane has shortened distance between people; the mobile phone has affected our communication; development of biologic and medicine has made some difficult diseases can be treated. Moreover, with the development of industry technology, a great increase has showed in productivity and many work labors has been pulled out from the heavy and repeating works.

However, social customs and ethics are the foundation of society and the change in them and their re-interpretation are hardly determined by the new technology development.

Take the feminism as a typical example. Feminism is said to have begun in the 19th century as people increasingly adopted the perception that women are oppressed in a male-centered society. Undoubtedly, without industrial revolution making heavy work can be done by machines, women were not allowed to involve more actively in industrial life because of physical difference between female and male. On the other hand, the feminist movement is rooted in the public eye due to many aspects of efforts by feminists. They encourage women to be "all that they can be" through all kinds of medium, such as newspaper, broadcasting, television and so on. They also try to use political power to protect women's rights. With all these educations and law protections, women gradually not only obtain economic independence, but also spiritual self-reliance. In short, the industrial...