Science, Technology, and Literature - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics

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Ancient and Early Modern Myths of Science and Technology

European classical representations of science and technology invoking ethical dilemmas appear in dramatic and didactic poetry. Greek and Roman myths describe Prometheus creating humans with Athena's consent and stealing fire for mortals from Zeus, actions that inspired John Ferguson's characterization of Prometheus as a master inventor and trickster whose rebellious intelligence helps humans rise above animals. Aeschylus's fifth-century Prometheus Bound posits that Zeus grew angry at human achievements and at Prometheus's theft, punishing the latter by chaining him to a rock. Hesiod's Theogony (c.700 B.C.E.) notes that Prometheus's brother Epimetheus married the beautiful Pandora, who was created as a punishment by Zeus. Pandora opens a container, releasing a host of miseries on humanity; however her curiosity inhibits human progress instead of encouraging innovation and invention. Biblical accounts imputing ethical aspects of science and technology include...

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This section contains 6,164 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Science, Technology, and Literature Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics
Science, Technology, and Literature from Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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