When Tools Organize Us

cited authors

  • Cox, Jason M; Rizk, Mysoon; Carpenter, Brian E; Zeigler, Eric R


  • Tools are extensions of organisms and, as such, are entangled with the development of the human species. Humans began with simple levers and inclined planes, allowing greater control of mass and weight. By the Industrial Revolution, machinery was increasingly subjected to a design aesthetic, wherein individual parts were shrouded. Where once equipment was exposed and accessible, modern technology broke away from such practice. Adding to this shrouding of parts, current implementation of complex new languages order the movements and components of twenty-first century tools. Because students in the arts encounter tools in both practical and creative capacities, helping contextualize those languages, they are positioned to be the first end-users of state-of-the-art technologies. Ideally, they will develop reflective appreciation, not only for their roles as tool-users, but also for the importance of play in the development of creativity.

publication date

  • 2018