Is Technology Destroying our Culture?

Our society has become very dependent upon technology; but when will we have enough of it?  The answer to this question is apparently never, and it can be quite disturbing at times.

Growing up as a child, I am sure most of us remember the various toys, or dolls, with which many of us played.  Some may stand out more than others, and these things may well have shaped who we have become today.  I remember specifically playing with two toys around the age of two, or three.  One of them was a small electronic keyboard that made an assortment of sounds.  The other was a game with a set of blocks of all different shapes and sizes.  Each of these blocks had to placed into its corresponding hole.  These toys helped us recognize the various shapes and sounds that exist all around us in the world.

Heading back to my dorm on the 6 train the other day, I decided to sit next to a woman with a small child on her lap.  I am going to take the wild assumption that this was her son.  After a few stops, the boy started getting antsy, so the mother began reaching into her bag.  I assumed that she would pull out a small knickknack that would occupy to child, but man was I wrong.  From the bag, she pulled the latest IPad.  She handed it to him, and he knew exactly how to work it.  He turned it on, selected an app, and went about playing his game.  For the rest of the ride to 96th street, I observed the child electronically playing the keyboard and placing blocks into their respective holes.

When I got off the train at 96th, I had some food for thought.  My parents always joke around how “back in the Stone Age,” they didn’t use technology, nor did they need it.   Now, the latest generation of children is now becoming familiar with the latest gadgets on the market.  Slowly but surely, technology is consuming the lives of our youth.  I can’t help but wonder whether this is a destruction of our once accepted culture, or a revolutionizing of it.

From this…

Children’s Electronic Keyboard
Taken from EBay

to this…

Taken From

This entry was posted in Cultural Encounters. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Is Technology Destroying our Culture?

  1. Joseph Maugeri says:

    When I was little, there was this great invention called “outside.” The way it worked was that a child would open the back door, step outside, and yeah, that was pretty much it. There was a whole lot of grass and dirt. Plenty of dirt. After that you could take a ball and grab a couple of friends. Then you’d go inside and grab a washcloth, some soap and scrub your knees until they were clean again.
    It’s sad really… So many kids may never really enjoy the experience of playing outside.
    Note: You are all free to call me a ‘cranky old man’ for this post.

  2. Alessandra Rao says:

    Nice job on building the anticipation. Haha. I agree completely. Kids are so addicted to technology! When I babysit, my little cousin steals my phone and drains my battery by spamming my photos with pictures of herself. And she’s three…

  3. Sifan Shen says:

    I’m not against kids using technology for recreational and educational purposes. Some toys are pretty dangerous to play with, but IPad makes the games safer. Furthermore, the latest gadgets are so portable, making video games and Ebooks accessible to teens at any time. As long as they are not addictive to technology, I don’t see the need to ban them.

  4. chriswoo says:

    There’s been a big change in how society views technology and new things keep coming out. Kids are getting addicted to these kinds of electronics, but I think that they could be turned into a positive thing. Maybe teaching apps through iPads could benefit the youth since they start playing with them at age 3.

  5. Jared Smith says:

    I don’t fully agree with having our kids use technology every single day. I try to get educational toys for my kids like puzzles and brain games. I get all of that from which I’ve used for years.

  6. Professor Bernstein says:

    Very well done piece about kids and technology! In my day, we did crossword puzzles!

  7. Nancy Zhu says:

    I feel so sad when I see kids probably younger than the age of 5 holding an iPad. I cringe when I see the sloppy and dirty hands of a little one touching the nice slim screens of such an expensive device, and then it slips out of their hands. I noticed a case specifically designed to accompany an app made for children. The case had the side with the buttons with sounds like the books we used to have. Marketers have accepted that these devices are now targeted to children too. The apps are merely picture books too! I suppose they might be more interactive. But I feel sad when I see kids on the train demanding their parents to hand over their phones or tablets. I just want to hand them a picture book, and have them enjoy the turning of pages. And your note can apply to me as well, as I feel strongly about this topic too.

  8. Joseph Maugeri says:

    Professor Bernstein: Crossword puzzles are actually a lot of fun. I do them pretty often.(By the way I am actually just a grandpa disguised as a college student.)

  9. tejjybear says:

    I feel like this has not only had an impact on children, but adults as well. Who would’ve thought that we would need to tweet about every minute of our lives, or instagram everything on our plate? Technology should be used in order to simplify some tasks, but there is no greater knowledge than that of the world around us, and I am starting to think that less and less people are sharing this sentiment.

Leave a Reply