Technomillennialism: A Subcultural Response to the Technological Threat of Y2K

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Abstract

The year 2000 (Y2K) computer software problem is framed as a technological boundary and cultural object. The author documents and analyses three subcultures' constructions of Y2K. The three subcultures are millennial (Evangelical-Charismatic-Pentecostal) Christians, militia-patriot survivalists, and computer professionals. Each subculture interpreted, received, comprehended, and explained the cultural object of Y2K. Combining the data from content analysis and interviews, the author creates a detailed picture of each subculture's response to Y2K. She compares and contrasts the three subcultures. Each subculture created a subcultural filter based on previously held value and belief systems, attitudes toward technology and computers, and interpretations of social environments to create a unique picture of Y2K. She examines how each of the subcultures framed technology through the framing of it as a technological object. Each response was located within the technological determinism versus social determinism debate and juxtaposed with its place in the technology as utopian or dystopian.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)483-512
Number of pages30
JournalScience Technology and Human Values
Volume28
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2003

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anthropology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Philosophy
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Human-Computer Interaction

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