Answered By: Linda Kern Last Updated: Jan 04, 2017 Views: 6
I've pondered this question - it takes some thought. A world without technology is usually the realm of prehistoric or post apocalyptic novelists and movie makers. I see two ways to approach this for a factual paper.
One is to explore the impact of technological innovation, and where we would be without it. You could choose any aspect of culture to discuss, such as religion, economy, or family and kinship. Alternatively, you could get more specific - business, medicine, education, daily life, communication. For this approach, I suggest beginning with the philosophy literature. The Religion and Philosophy Collection, accessible through our Databases A-Z list, provides some interesting articles. A general search of DE "technological innovations" (paste in the search; the DE and formatting are important), limited to scholarly journals, yields some interesting articles such as Edwards, P. N., Gitelman, L., Hecht, G., Johns, A., Larkin, B., & Safier, N. (2011). AHR conversation: Historical perspectives on the circulation of information. American Historical Review, 116(5), 1393-1435 and Hall, A. L. (2006). Whose progress? The language of global health. Journal of Medicine & Philosophy, 31(3), 285-304. In the left side toolbar, click on Subject to reveal the subject categories of these results. Click on a category such as Social Change to narrow the results to articles like Freudenberg, W. R., & Gramling, R. (1992). Community impacts of technological change toward a longitudinal perspective. Social Forces, 70(4), 937-955.
The same search of DE "technological innovations" and using the Subjects in the left side toolbar to narrow will also work in Academic Search Complete from the Databases A-Z List. In this database, searching "without technology" also yields results, as does business AND "without technology" AND teaching AND "without technology". The "AND" improves the results, so include it.
Another approach would be to look at communities without technology as a possible comparison. Searching (amish OR memmonites) AND technology - paste in the entire search, parentheses and all - yields a number of results. I found several articles in another database, ABI/Inform Complete, linked on Databases A-Z, including Tenner, E. (2005). Plain technology. Technology Review, 108, 75, which may be very useful. This is a trade publication published by MIT, giving it a lot of credibility.
Going back to Academic Search Complete, using the same search, I found articles such as Tremblay, M. S., Esliger, D. W., Copeland, J. L., Barnes, J. D., & Bassett Jr., D. R. (2008). Moving forward by looking back: Lessons learned from long-lost lifestyles. Applied Physiology, Nutrition & Metabolism, 33(4), 836-842. doi:10.1139/H08-045. There will be some clutter due to a chemist named Amish who terns up in the results.
Thanks for asking a librarian.