The Tech Intellectuals (or lack thereof)
A quarter of a century ago, Russell Jacoby lamented the demise of the public intellectual. The cause of death was an improvement in material conditions. Public intellectuals—Dwight Macdonald, I.F.
Intellectuals had to turn away from the public and toward the practiced obscurities of academic research and prose. In Jacoby’s description, these intellectuals “no longer need[ed] or want[ed] a larger public…. Campuses [were] their homes; colleagues their audience; monographs and specialized journals their media.”
Over the last decade, conditions have changed again. New possibilities are opening up for public intellectuals. Internet-fueled media such as blogs have made it much easier for aspiring intellectuals to publish their opinions.
See on www.democracyjournal.org