Advanced

Human conceptions of the rise and fall of civilizations

Dunér, David LU (2015) The 66th International Astronautical Congress In International Astronautical Congress
Abstract
SETI, our hopes or fears of a future contact with ETI, is a modern expression of an unending human obsession with the rise and fall of civilizations. People across the globe from our earliest sources to our contemporary culture have tried to understand the beginning and end of history, the creation and the doom. Factor L of the Drake Equation could in other words be understood in a longer historical context of human conceptions about history, time, and civilization. In order to formulate L in its modern version, a number of philosophical, scientific, and technical discoveries and inventions were needed before it became possible to discuss the longevity of extraterrestrial technical civilizations. Of special significance was the “discovery... (More)
SETI, our hopes or fears of a future contact with ETI, is a modern expression of an unending human obsession with the rise and fall of civilizations. People across the globe from our earliest sources to our contemporary culture have tried to understand the beginning and end of history, the creation and the doom. Factor L of the Drake Equation could in other words be understood in a longer historical context of human conceptions about history, time, and civilization. In order to formulate L in its modern version, a number of philosophical, scientific, and technical discoveries and inventions were needed before it became possible to discuss the longevity of extraterrestrial technical civilizations. Of special significance was the “discovery of time,” the emergence of a set of ideas for understanding human temporality: first, linear time, time that has a beginning and an end, and in which nothing is forever; second, long time lines, in which there was a time before humans and human civilization, and that the history of our civilization is only a fraction of the history of universe; and third, that time has a direction, that humans are historical beings – that is, knowledge, culture, and society are not something preexisting but something man-made, evolving, that rests on the experiences and actions of previous generations in a cumulative process leading to the development of knowledge, behavior, and life conditions, or what is sometimes called the “idea of progress.” L is a measure of the civilizing or socialization process, and the variables that underlie it: biocultural coevolution and the interaction between the evolution of cognition and socialization. I think that the societal impact of SETI, and human hopes and fears of extraterrestrial encounters, must be understood in this historical context of human conceptions of the rise and fall of civilizations. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding
publication status
published
subject
in
International Astronautical Congress
pages
4 pages
publisher
International Astronautical Federation
conference name
The 66th International Astronautical Congress
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
d8ab8fa8-9c4f-4e75-adfb-28bf9b5032c7 (old id 8506373)
date added to LUP
2016-01-08 14:39:51
date last changed
2016-04-16 10:15:04
@misc{d8ab8fa8-9c4f-4e75-adfb-28bf9b5032c7,
  abstract     = {SETI, our hopes or fears of a future contact with ETI, is a modern expression of an unending human obsession with the rise and fall of civilizations. People across the globe from our earliest sources to our contemporary culture have tried to understand the beginning and end of history, the creation and the doom. Factor L of the Drake Equation could in other words be understood in a longer historical context of human conceptions about history, time, and civilization. In order to formulate L in its modern version, a number of philosophical, scientific, and technical discoveries and inventions were needed before it became possible to discuss the longevity of extraterrestrial technical civilizations. Of special significance was the “discovery of time,” the emergence of a set of ideas for understanding human temporality: first, linear time, time that has a beginning and an end, and in which nothing is forever; second, long time lines, in which there was a time before humans and human civilization, and that the history of our civilization is only a fraction of the history of universe; and third, that time has a direction, that humans are historical beings – that is, knowledge, culture, and society are not something preexisting but something man-made, evolving, that rests on the experiences and actions of previous generations in a cumulative process leading to the development of knowledge, behavior, and life conditions, or what is sometimes called the “idea of progress.” L is a measure of the civilizing or socialization process, and the variables that underlie it: biocultural coevolution and the interaction between the evolution of cognition and socialization. I think that the societal impact of SETI, and human hopes and fears of extraterrestrial encounters, must be understood in this historical context of human conceptions of the rise and fall of civilizations.},
  author       = {Dunér, David},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {4},
  publisher    = {ARRAY(0xaf17580)},
  series       = {International Astronautical Congress},
  title        = {Human conceptions of the rise and fall of civilizations},
  year         = {2015},
}