Vice, “The Anarcho-Primitivist Who Wants Us All to Give Up Technology,” June 25, 2014

The Anarcho-Primitivist Who Wants Us All to Give Up Technology
Roc Morin, Vice, June 25, 2014

“Whenever I think of [inventor of the computer] Alan Turing, I think about the Apple logo,” began John Zerzan. “The logo is an apple with a bite out of it. Of course, Turing supposedly smeared cyanide on an apple and bit into it after being persecuted by the government for being gay. A bite from an apple is also associated with our expulsion from the Garden of Eden. I don’t think that’s quite the message they’re trying to convey, but there it is.”

I had arranged an interview with arguably the world’s most prominent anti-technology philosopher via email. The interview was to be conducted via Skype. At the appointed time, Zerzan’s voice leapt across the continent—from Eugene, Oregon to New York City in the fraction of a second. He was smiling when his face flashed onto the monitor. I smiled back and looked into his eyes—before catching myself. The irony of Skype, of course, is that in order to actually make eye contact with someone, you have to ignore their eyes and look into the camera instead.

 

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