chapter  43
9 Pages

The Heuristics of Fear

WithHans Jonas

Hans Jonas, of the New School for Social Research, was the chief Jeremiah of the symposium. His view of modern technology is tinged by his fear that technology places the future of humanity in jeopardy, Yet he elevated this fear into an operative principle, arguing that fear of technology's consequences would lead to action that would protect us against technology. Jonas hoped that his jeremiads would turn him into a Cassandra in reverse, that his warnings about the dangers of our technological future would be believed and would therefore inspire preventive action, so that his fearsome prophecies would, in the end, prove untrue.