Introduction to the Philosophy of Jacques Ellul
* Book: Technique, Discourse, and Consciousness: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Jacques Ellul. By David Lovekin. Wipf and Stock, 2022
"This study examines Ellul’s historical, biblical, and social analyses of how technology manipulates and impoverishes modern thought, culture, and language. In the spirit of Georg Hegel and Ernst Cassirer, Ellul explores how technology begins in myths, stories, and religion, advances to tools, and then develops into data, algorithms, and abstract systems which are detached from human bodies and communities. Efficiency then becomes an absolute in all areas of human life, and the mentality of technique becomes lost in its creations. These modern symbols, posing as ultimate human goods and values, are denigrated by technique, leaving humanity awash in cliches, in groundless social media, and in blathering slogans that sustain the illusion that politics and culture have now become.
“Lovekin is the leading representative of the philosophical interpretation of Ellul’s concept of technique as the basis of modern society. He expertly takes the reader through Ellul’s demonstration of the transposition of thought from the pursuit of the summum bonum to thought as the production of an ensemble of means that constantly expands itself and from which there is no exit.”