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1546-2080 Online :: 1546-203X Print
Nano Hyperbole and Lessons from Earlier Technologies
Volume 1, Issue 4

Chris Toumey, University of South Carolina

At this point, there has been very little public awareness of nanotechnology, let alone any public reaction, but public reactions to nanotech will soon arise. To anticipate the likely societal reponse, policymakers can draw lessons and insights from the arrival of other technologies in the recent past. In light of the climate of “nanohyperbole” that is forming, an analysis of past technological waves that have been accompanied by strong public reactions is urgently needed. In this article, anthropologist Chris Toumey identifies the episodes of cold fusion and recombinant DNA as useful models to understand the public response to nanotechnology.

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