Mobilizing Modernity: The Nuclear Moment

By Ian Welsh | Go to book overview

Notes

1Introduction
1
The ongoing quest for nuclear fusion and the human genome mapping project represent two of the more prominent examples.
2
I am indebted to cultural theorist Michael Thompson for the notion of TINA derived from his contribution to an EU appraisal of fusion research (see STOA, 1991, Vol. 5).
3
The notion of material practices is developed by historian of science Donna Haraway. Haraway's approach is considered particularly important here because of her argument that discourse is a material practice. See Haraway 1992 Primate Visions, London, Verso.
4
On time and time frames see Adam (1990) Time and Social Theory, Cambridge, Polity.
5
Freud, of course, wrote that the penis was the bridge to the future but developments in genetic engineering and bio-technology require a major re-evaluation of this view.
6
The importance of discourse and symbolic legitimisation in the exercise of political power was clearly flagged by Poulantzas (1968, 1973) where the work of Foucault and Edelman are acknowledged in footnotes.
7
This approach thus addresses Feyerabend's recognition that 'the debate between science and myth … ceased without having been won by either side' (Feyerabend 1980:171).
8
Technically this particular moment commences with the rejection of Rutherford's view that no useful energy will ever be gained from the atom and the recognition that Germany could be developing an atomic weapon.
9
Such relations of assumed superiority inevitably shape the performative repertoires of both sides of superior/subordinated equation in quite systemic ways. These shape both the form and content of discourses and are mediated by the performative sphere. A variety of sociological descriptors have been used over time to denote such locations. Goffman's dramaturgical approach emphasised front and back stage locations. Scott's notion of 'public' and 'hidden' transcripts applies well to the work presented here given his sensitivity to a number of modalities within each location (Scott 1990:2-6 and Ch. 2).
10
Though prospects of nuclear war appear to have deminished since the end of the 1980s Cold War, the world's nuclear arsenals remain tied into early warning systems with hair trigger launch procedures. The potential for accidental nuclear war remains. On 25 January 1995 a US scientific probe launched off the coast of Norway is reported to have placed Russian

-228-

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Mobilizing Modernity: The Nuclear Moment
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Figures viii
  • Acknowledgements ix
  • Acronyms x
  • 1 - Introduction 1
  • 2 - The Nuclear Moment 34
  • 3 - Resisting the Juggernaut 68
  • 4 - Accidents Will Happen 95
  • 5 - Modernity's Mobilisation Stalls 118
  • 6 - The Moment of Direct Action 150
  • 7 - Networking 183
  • 8 - Conclusions 206
  • Notes 228
  • Bibliography 244
  • Author Index 256
  • Subject Index 259
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