Nanoselves: NBIC and the Culture of Convergence
Bulletin of Science, Technology and Society
Vol. 30, Num. 2
This essay deals with nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and cognitive science (NBIC) and the convergence between these four technologies, specifically how reductionism is part and parcel of the culture of convergence, or widely known as NBIC convergence. Venkatesan identifies the forward-looking rhetoric of proponents of this convergence and also points out that funding far outpaces public understanding in this regard, a problem when many scientists in this realm are not overly concerned with caution. This, in turn, brings up questions about ethics in these fields, which Venkatesan uses to cover the contested ground that is the burgeoning field of nanoethics and the arguments about its relevance. What she finds, in the end, is that the culture of convergence is one that does not take into account culture itself, and anyone trying to identify oneself with these emerging technologies will be stricken with a true crisis of representation.