The Nature Institute
[Return to Home Page and Guide to My Writings]
Å gjenoppdage organismen– fra molekyl til evolusjon (“Rediscovering the Organism — From Molecule to Evolution”), translated by Trond Skaftnesmo (Norway: Paradigmeskifte Forlag, 2017).
Beyond Biotechnology: The Barren Promise of Genetic Engineering, co-authored with Craig Holdrege (Lexington KY: University Press of Kentucky, 2008).
Devices of the Soul: Battling for Our Selves in an Age of Machines (Sebastopol: O’Reilly Media, 2007).
The Future Does Not Compute: Transcending the Machines in Our Midst (Sebastopol CA: O’Reilly and Associates, 1995).
Extraordinary Lives: Disability and Destiny in a Technological Age, Nature Institute Perspectives #1 (Ghent NY: The Nature Institute, 2003).
In the Belly of the Beast: Technology, Nature, and the Human Prospect, Nature Institute Perspectives #3 (Ghent NY: The Nature Institute, 2004).Book Chapters
“The Deceiving Virtues of Technology”, in Technê (Dark Mountain no. 8, Autumn. Croydon UK: Dark Mountain Project, 2015), pp. 7-18.
“Why Is the Moon Getting Farther Away?”, in Leave No Child Inside (Great Barrington MA: Orion Books, 2013), pp. 2-14.
“The Myth of the Machine-Organism: From Genetic Mechanisms to Living Beings”, in Genetic Explanations: Sense and Nonsense (Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press, 2012), pp. 51-68.
“Toward an Ecological Conversation”, in The Environmental Responsibility Reader, edited by Martin Reynolds, Chris Blackmore, and Mark J. Smith (New York: Zed Books and The Open University, 2009), pp. 83-93.
“The Deceiving Virtues of Technology: From the Cave of the Cyclops to Silicon Valley”, in Readings for Technical Communication, edited by Jennifer MacLennan (Don Mills, Ontario: Oxford University Press, 2008), pp. 377-86.
“Toward an Ecological Conversation”, in The Virtues of Ignorance: Complexity, Sustainability, and the Limits of Knowledge, edited by Bill Vitek and Wes Jackson (Lexington KY: University Press of Kentucky, 2008).
“Information oder Bedeutung?” (Information or Meaning), in Was kommt nach der Informationsgesellschaft? (What’s Next After the Information Society?) (Gütersloh, Germany: Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2002).
“Beyond the Algorithmic Mind”, in Cognitive Technology: Instruments of Mind (Berlin: Springer, 2001), pp. 190-202.
“Virtuelle Spiritualität und die Dekonstruktion der Welt”, in Ritus, Kult, Virtualität, edited by Christian Wessely and Gerhard Larcher (Regensburg, Austria: Verlag Friedrich Pustet, 2000).Published Articles
Far the greater number of my articles, published in the Nature Institute’s NetFuture newsletter and In Context newsletters, are not listed here. But I list below some of the ones that seem to me most worthy of note.
“Why Can’t Biologists Quit Believing in Intelligent Design”, In Context #38 (Fall, 2017).
“Evolution and the Purposes of Life”, in The New Atlantis (no. 51, Winter, 2017), pp. 63-91.
“The Embryo’s Eloquent Form”, Journal of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health vol. 27, no. 3 (Spring, 2013), pp. 162-79.
“Können Moleküle Entscheidungen treffen? Was die Sprache der Biologen über das Leben aussagt” (by Stephen L. Talbott and Craig Holdrege), Die Drei (Feb., 2012).
“Evolution and the Illusion of Randomness”, The New Atlantis no. 33 (Fall, 2011), pp. 37-64. This article originally appeared in NetFuture #183 (Nov. 10, 2011). It has also been reprinted in Elemente der Naturwissenschaft #96 (summer, 2012), pp. 56-75.
“When Holism Was the Future”, Biodynamics #277 (Fall, 2011), pp. 7-11. This article originally appeared in In Context #22 (Fall, 2009), pp. 3-6.
“What Do Organisms Mean?”, The New Atlantis no. 30 (Winter 2011), pp. 24-49. This article originally appeared in NetFuture #182 (Feb. 22, 2011). Note: title has been changed to "From Physical Causes to Organisms of Meaning" in article linked to below.
“The Unbearable Wholeness of Beings”, The New Atlantis no. 29 (Fall 2010), pp. 27-51. This article originally appeared in NetFuture #181 (Dec. 9, 2010).
“Getting Over the Code Delusion”, The New Atlantis no. 28 (Summer 2010), pp. 3-27. This article originally appeared in NetFuture #179 (Feb. 18, 2010).
“The Logic of Science” (critique by Christoph Adami of “Ghosts in the Evolutionary Machinery”, with reply by Steve Talbott), The New Atlantis no. 19 (Winter 2008), pp. 3-8.
“Can the New Science of Evo-Devo Explain the Form of Organisms?”, Ariadnes Årbok 2007-2008 (Ariadne Annual 2007-2008), pp. 149-67.
“Science’s Forbidden Question”, Ariadnes Årbok 2007-2008 (Ariadne Annual 2007-2008), pp. 126-35. Co-authored with Craig Holdrege.
“Ghosts in the Evolutionary Machinery: The Strange, Disembodied Life of Digital Organisms”, The New Atlantis no. 18 (Fall, 2007), pp. 26-40. This article originally appeared in NetFuture #170 (July 19, 2007).
“The Language of Nature”, The New Atlantis no. 15 (Winter 2007), pp. 41-76. This article originally appeared in NetFuture #167 (March 15, 2007), #168 (April 13, 2007), and #169 (May 10, 2007).
“The Question Science Won’t Ask”, by Craig Holdrege and Steve Talbott, Orion (July/August, 2006), pp. 24-31.
“Waldorf Education: Transformation Toward Wholeness”, Research Bulletin of the Research Institute for Waldorf Education, vol. 10, no. 2 (June, 2005), pp. 15-21.
“Logic, DNA, and Poetry”, The New Atlantis no. 8 (Spring 2005), pp. 61-72. This article originally appeared in NetFuture #160 (January 25, 2005).
“CyberTracking Bushmen”, Orion vol. 23, no. 4 (July/August 2004), pp. 7-8. Taken from “CyberTrackers: Bushmen and Information Technology”, NetFuture #154 (February 12, 2004). Another adaptation of the same article appeared in Shift no. 6 (March - May, 2005), pp. 8-9.
“A More Child-Like Science”, The New Atlantis no. 4 (Winter 2004), pp. 23-31. This article also appeared in the Research Bulletin of the Research Institute for Waldorf Education, vol. 10, no 1 (March, 2005).
“A Conversation with Nature”, The New Atlantis no. 3 (Fall, 2003), pp. 34-46. (Published elsewhere — see above — as “Toward an Ecological Conversation”.)
“A Komplexitás varázsa”, Információs Társadalom, vol. 2, no. 2 (2002), pp. 30-39. (This is a translation of “The Lure of Complexity” in the Hungarian journal, Information Society.)
“On Forgetting to Wear Boots”, Research Bulletin of the Research Institute for Waldorf Education, vol. 7, no. 2 (June, 2002), pp. 4-8.
“Sowing Technology”, co-authored with Craig Holdrege, in Sierra (July/August, 2001), pp. 34-39, 72-73. Subsequently published in NetFuture #123 (October 9, 2001).
Review of Goethe’s Way of Science: A Phenomenology of Nature, edited by David Seamon and Arthur Zajonc, in Worldviews, vol. 5, no. 1 (March, 2001), pp. 105-10.
“The Trouble with Ubiquitous Technology Pushers”. Proceedings of the Tenth Conference on Computers, Freedom and Privacy, published by the Association for Computing Machinery (April 4-7, 2000). The theme was subsequently developed into a three-part article in NetFuture #100, 101, and 112.
“Computers, the Internet, and the Abdication of Consciousness”, an interview with Stephen Talbott by Dolores Brien, The C. G. Jung Page -- C. G. Jung, Analytical Psychology, and Culture (January 2000 - website no longer in existence).
“Technology Literacy — Four Guiding Principles for Educators and Parents”, a draft statement by the Alliance for Childhood (Task Force on Computers in Childhood), of which I was a co-author.
“Does Information Exist?” Finance and Technologie (special magazine supplement to the Swiss business and finance daily, L’Agefi, produced in cooperation with L’Observatoire de la Finance), June 28, 1999), pp. 14-16. Article on same theme (and with the same title) was published in NetFuture #58 (October 22, 1997).
“Who’s Killing Higher Education?” Educom Review (March/April, 1999), pp. 26-33. Also published in NetFuture #78 (October 15, 1998).
“Computers, Brains, and Children”, Research Bulletin of the Research Institute for Waldorf Education, vol. 4, no. 1 (January, 1999), pp. 23-29.
“Why is the Moon Getting Further Away? Helping the Child Connect to the World”, The Internet and Higher Education, vol. 1, no. 2 (1998), pp. 139-46. A similar version of this article was also published in Orion (Spring, 1998), pp. 34-44. Published as well in NetFuture #70 (April 30, 1998).
“Wired Classrooms: What You’re Not Hearing”, Lapis #7 (Spring - Summer, 1998), pp. 65-69. Also published in NetFuture
“Between Discordant Eras”, Archetype, Newsletter Articles Supplement of the Science Group of the Anthroposophical Society in Great Britain (September, 1998), pp. 37-51.
“Help Me! I Can’t Stop Shoveling Facts!” Holistic Education Review, vol. 11, no. 1 (Spring, 1998), pp. 38-43.
“Aversion to Risks -- or Loss of Meaning?”, New Jersey Journal of Communication, vol. 6, no. 1 (Spring, 1998), pp. 10-17.
“Meetings with a Snake”, Research Bulletin of the Research Institute for Waldorf Education, vol. 2, no. 1 (March, 1997), pp. 6-12. A portion of this paper was reprinted in Renewal: A Journal for Waldorf Education, vol. 6, no. 2 (Fall, 1997), pp. 5-7.
“Asleep at the Keyboard”, one of 50 invited commentaries on “The Next Fifty Years”, published in the special anniversay issue of Communications of the ACM, vol. 40, no. 2 (February, 1997), pp. 81-82.
“Do We Really Want a Global Village?” in The Threefold Review, issue #13 (Winter/Spring, 1996), pp. 6-9. This had been previously published as chapter 9 of The Future Does Not Compute: Transcending the Machines in Our Midst.Conference Papers, Courses, and Addresses
“A Simple Truth -- So Simple That It Heals the Conflict Between Science and Religion, Bridges the Chasm Between Fact and Value, and Pacifies the Combatants in the Cultural Wars. (And, by the way, why have we missed it for so long?)”, lecture to the Technology and Ethics Working Group of the Yale Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics (May 2, 2007).
“Grasping for Certainty, Fleeing from Meaning - The Dilemma of Science and Some Thoughts on its Resolution”, lecture at The Nature Institute (April 14, 2005).
“The Crucifixion of the World and the Renewal of Science”, talk to the New York City branch of the Anthroposophical Society (December 10, 2004).
“Television and Children: Why Let Others Tell You What’s Best for Your Child?” Talk to the Parent-Teacher Group at Hawthorne Valley School, Ghent, New York (May 8, 2002).
“Why Bother with TV Turnoff Week?” Talk to the assembled high school students at Hawthorne Valley School, Ghent, New York (April 22, 2002).
“Our Speaking, Nature’s Becoming”. Talk given at a symposium entitled, “Conversing with the Intelligence in Nature”, Columbia University (April 25-27, 2002). The symposium was sponsored by the Center for the Study of the Spiritual Foundations of Education at Columbia Teachers College, and by The Nature Institute.
Participation in the working group on “Technology Literacy for Ecologically Sustainable Democracy”, sponsored by the Alliance for Childhood, The Nature Institute, and the Education Department of Wittenberg University. The group’s purpose was to draft a set of guidelines for technology education in primary and secondary schools.
“The Deceiving Virtues of Technology”. A plenary address at the 4th International Conference on Cognitive Technology: Instruments of Mind, University of Warwick, Coventry, U.K. (August 6-9, 2001).
“Technology and Humanity: Does the Future Compute?” A one-week course at the Rudolf Steiner Institute, Waterville, Maine (July 16-20, 2001).
“Why Not Globalization”. Plenary address at the Technology and Globalization Teach-In, Hunter College, New York City (February 24-25, 2001). Sponsored by the International Forum on Globalization, New York Open Center, Lapis Magazine, and the International Center for Technology Assessment.
“The Child of the Machine: Your Child in the Age of Technology”. In the Mountaintop Workshop Series for Parents and Educators Who Care, Hunter, New York (February 13, 2001).
“Transcending the Machines in Our Midst”. Public lecture sponsored by the Institute of New Dimensions, Hackensack, New Jersey (December 12, 2000).
“Is High Technology Turning Us into Zombies?” Address in the Lecture Series in the Humanities and Sciences, EMC Corporation, Hopkinton, Massachusetts (July 14, 2000).
“Does the Future Compute?” and “Dreaming of Silicon Immortality”. Two half-day workshops at the Rudolf Steiner Centre, Toronto, Ontario (September 29-30, 2000).
“Is High Technology Turning Us into Zombies?” EMC Corporation, Lecture Series in the Humanities and Sciences, Hopkinton, Massachusetts (July 14, 2000)
“Information Technology is the Root Cause of Environmental Destruction. Why Should We Look to It for Healing?” Invited lecture at the conference, “PlaNetwork: Global Ecology and Information Technology”, San Francisco, California (May 12-14, 2000).
Public conference on “The Computer and the Young Child”, sponsored by the Center for the Study of the Spiritual Foundations of Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, New York City (April 29, 2000). I was a respondent to lectures by Jane Healy and Alison Armstrong.
“Transcending the Machines in Our Midst”, lecture for faculty, parents, and the public at the London Waldorf School, London, Ontario (April 5, 2000).
“How Technology Can Enslave Us”, luncheon address, tenth annual conference on Computers, Freedom, and Privacy, Toronto (April 4-7, 2000).
“How Technology Alienates Us from the World”, lecture as part of a workshop, “Do We Need Biotechnology to Feed the World?” conducted by The Nature Institute, Harlemville (Ghent), New York (April 1, 2000).
“The Most Dangerous Computer Is the One in Your Head”. Invited address, annual conference of the Central Regional division of the Detroit Waldorf School. I also conducted a workshop on “Thinking about the Computer in the Classroom” (February 17-19, 2000).
“Awakening to Ourselves in the Age of Intelligent Machines”. Banquet address, Eastern Small College Computing Conference, St. Bonaventure College, Olean, New York (October 15, 1999).
“Awakening to Ourselves in the Age of Intelligent Machines”. Keynote address at the Fall, 1999 conference of the Association of Professional Librarians of New Brunswick, Moncton, New Brunswick (October 2, 1999).
“The Strange Disappearance of Earth: Is Cyberspace a Black Hole?” Lecture at the University of Moncton, Moncton, New Brunswick (October 1, 1999). Co-sponsored by the University and the Association of Professional Librarians of New Brunswick.
“The Global Compulsions of Technology”. Workshop conducted at the conference on “The Threefold Social Order and Elite Globalization”, sponsored by the Social Science Section of the Anthroposophical Society of America, New Lebanon, New York, July 9 - 11, 1999.
Guest Professorship, Karl Franzens University, Graz, Austria (June, 1999). I taught a course on “Coming to Terms with Technology”.
“Virtual Spirituality and the Destruction of the World”. Invited lecture at the conference on “Rite, Cult, Virtuality”, Graz, Austria, sponsored by the Institute for Fundamental Theology at Karl Franzens University, and the European Society for Catholic Theology.
“Is the Computer Helping to Destroy Childhood?” Lecture sponsored by the Parent Outreach Committee of the Waldorf School of Garden City and the Anthroposophical Initiative Group of Long Island (April 23, 1999).
“Using Digital Technologies Responsibly”. A talk and discussion with the high school student body of the Waldorf School of Garden City (April 23, 1999).
“Owen Barfield and Technological Society”. Lecture at the Owen Barfield Centenary Celebration, Columbia University and Drew University (December 4 − 5, 1998).
“Abstracting Ourselves to Death”. Lecture in series entitled “cyberwhat.lvc.edu”, at Lebanon Valley College, Annville, Pennsylvania (November 17, 1998). In addition, I taught two follow-up class sessions.
“Abandoning the Earth”. Lecture in series sponsored by Albright College, Reading, Pennsylvania (November 18, 1998).
“How Distance-Collapsing Technologies Move Us Farther Apart”. Keynote address, Annual Great Issues Forum sponsored by the Utah Library Association, Salt Lake City, Utah (November 10, 1998).
“The Computer in the Classroom: An Answer without a Question”. Lecture in the Greater West Michigan Education Lecture Series, sponsored by the Grand Valley State University School of Education, Grand Rapids, Michigan (October 29, 1998).
“Can We Transcend Technology?” Lecture in public lecture series sponsored by Camphill Village, Copake, New York (October 25, 1998).
“The Human Quest through Art and Technology”. A lecture and weekend course taught with sculptor Michael Howard, Sunbridge College, Spring Valley, New York (September 25-26, 1998).
“There is No Such Thing as Information”. Keynote address, Netspeed ’98, conference of The Alberta Library, Calgary, Alberta (September 17-19, 1998).
“Why All the Fuss about Information?”. Keynote address, annual conference of the Reference and User Services Association, division of the American Library Association, Washington, D.C. (June 29, 1998).
“The Transfer of Information is Not Education”. Lecture sponsored by the National Library of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario (April 16, 1998).
“The Computer and the Child”. Paper read at the Jacques Ellul Symposium of the thirteenth annual conference on Science, Technology, and Society, Naperville, Illinois (March 5-7, 1998).
“Why Computer-based Education is Failing (and How to Do It Right)”. Address to the annual Professional Educators’ Convention in Des Moines, Iowa, March 2, 1998.
“Why is the Moon Getting Farther Away? Helping the Child Connect to the World”. Lecture at the conference on “Education and Technology: Seeking The Human Essentials,” Columbia Teachers College, Columbia University, New York (December 4-6, 1997).
“Help Me! I Can’t Stop Shoveling Facts!” Paper delivered to the conference on “Education and Technology: Asking the Right Questions” at Pennsylvania State University, State College, Penn. (September 17-20, 1997).
“Aversion to Risks -- or Loss of Meaning?” Paper delivered to the 1997 inaugural conference of the New Jersey Communication Association, Montclair, New Jersey (April 26, 1997).
“On Being Determinedly Literate”. Lecture to the Walter J. Ong Seminar, Fordham University, April 17, 1997.
“Christianity in an Age of Automatic Mechanisms”. Keynote and follow-on lecture at the conference on “Real Christianity in a Virtual Culture”, Eastern Mennonite Seminary, Harrisonburg, Virginia (March 13-15, 1997).
“Forgetting Ourselves in an Age of Abstraction”. Paper read at the 54th annual convention of the New York State Speech Communication Association, October 11-13, 1996, with Neil Postman as respondent.
“Does the Internet Have a Future?” Keynote address delivered to conference on "The Internet: Hype or Reality?" Sydney, Australia (June 24-25, 1996).
[Return to Home Page and Guide to My Writings]
Last revision: July 13, 2012
Steve Talbott :: Partial List of Publications and Presentations
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