Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Cultural Engineering

I was going to my engineering mathematics class in the Islamic Knowledge department (some math classes are taking place there due to a space shortage in the math department) where I saw a poster with the title "The Cultural Engineering National Conference". This is a new plan from an ever fearful government that's doing its best to survive. So what the heck is cultural engineering? I thought it should be another invention of him ("him," in the same sense it was used in The Lord of the Rings) just like the software movement project he announced some time ago and had nothing to do with real software (yes, he's so supreme that he can order the words change their meanings as he likes!). So I started to do a search on Google, and guess what? I was right! I got some results, though. Let's check one out. This is what Cultural Engineering L.L.C. says, and it's interesting enough to quote from their definition page:

"Cultural engineering is a conceptual approach to cultural development planning and management that takes into account the changing concepts of culture and the design of practical strategies for dealing with issues and problems raised by culture and development in diverse contexts.... In other words, cultural engineering is about systems, processes, alternatives and the formulation of creative solutions to challenges in the development of cultural institutions and the promotion of people’s participation in cultural life."

It seems, as I already suspected, cultural engineering is not a well-established world-wide concept and the results I got were mostly part inventions used by some author to express an idea, like the one I quoted, which is mostly a corporate definition and interestingly involves "the promotion of people's participation in cultural life," as the last sentence puts it, and not someone else trying to smooth the cultural status of a nation to match his own interest. Yes, they want to engineer a nation in quite the same way someone tries to change the internals of a machine to have it work better for their needs. The only difference is that in the former a seventy-million nation should suffer and not a poor machine, but who cares?

Now that I'm writing about a himself-invented phrase, I think it's a good place to write about the other one I mentioned earlier: a software movement! I'd better quote a definition first. This is my translation of part of an essay from aviny.com. The essay titled "The Principals of the Software Movement" is written by Mohammad Ghalibaf, the current Tehran mayor.

Every civilization is built out of hardware and software. Hardware is the social structure and its products.... software is the conceptual system that backs the hardware, and like the hardware has many types: the principal concepts like philosophy of logic and logic [itself], the technical concepts like different mathematical, physical and social sciences, and also the social and general concepts with their own technical definitions, all of which are among the software.

I hate it when non-technicals use a phrase they don't understand at all for something else. Anyhow, software movement, along with cultural engineering, is part of a larger project they are working on: to control all the aspects of the Iranian society and then use it as a tool for their aims. The aims I'm talking about is, of course, far from a local Islamic system for Iran. They are (or want to be) "global gladiators", as Alvin Toffler calls them in his book, Powershift. Remember that their religion is all about world conquer.


Anonymous said...

hi, i think your article is so rude and not logical. please firs think then write or say sth.
yours faithfully

Jimmy Jazz said...

The concept "ingénierie culturelle" was invented by Claude Mollard, the owner of ABCD.

Oberlin said...


moh said...

yes first think and then write, see this link:
which says:
Cultural Engineering is a recently established consultancy based in Dubai working on the cultural dimension of socioeconomic development and the management of cultural enterprises. CE designs, develops and promotes the use of managerial tools and systems for cultural development planning and the training of cultural entrepreneurs.

Homayoon said...

What is referring me to the non-existent (parked domain) web site of a Dubai based firm going to prove?

You don't like your power-hungry leader being criticized? Then don't read my blog. Nobody is forcing you. But I don't consider him (or anyone else) my god, and I write whatever I like.

And I still stand by my position that cultures are not be "engineered." Cultures emerge on their own.

Anonymous said...

i know the meaning of the word due to my relation in the tunisian interior minister ,In fact it was first time evoked with Skinner and it's beyond freedom and dignity book , he stipulate that humain are only bodys and that we can put in the software that we want to make it ran as we like, it's used here in tunisia to prevent youth from getting "too religious" or inhibate any social movement that get's against the interior minister 's will , it's applying a painful stimulus to peope that you wanttheir behavior to change , they keep changing their habits and ideas till you are sure to get what you want in their mind the stimuus can varie from a person impolitly asking you a cigaret or ony getting the papers you need after few days of lateness...,it's more a harassment that continue without knowing what hits you ,so you never blame anyone (not the interior minister of corse),it's pure evil in my opignon