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WHAT IS CALLED THINKING?

shop. But the lever and buttons in the manipulations of the industrial worker belong to a machine. And where does the machine, such as a power generator, belong? Modern technology is not constituted by, and does not consist in, the installation of electric motors and turbines and similar machinery; that sort of thing can on the contrary be erected only to the extent to which the essence of modern technology has already assumed dominion. Our age is not a technological age because it is the age of the machine; it is an age of the machine because it is the technological age. But so long as the essence of technology does not closely concern us, in our thought, we shall never be able to know what the machine is. We shall not be able to tell what it is to which the industrial worker's hand is related. We shall not be able to make out what kind of manual work, of handicraft, these manipulations are. And yet—merely to be able to ask such questions, we must already have caught sight of what is commonly meant by handicraft in the light of its essential references. Neither the industrial workman nor the engineers, let alone the factory proprietor and least of all the state, can know at all where modern man "lives" when he stands in some relatedness or other to the machine and machine parts. None of us know as yet what handicraft modern man in the technological world must carry on, must carry on even if he is not a worker in the sense of the worker at the machine. Neither Hegel nor Marx could know it yet, nor could they ask why their thinking, too, still had to move in the shadow of the essential nature of technology; and so they never achieved the freedom to grasp and adequately think about this nature. Important as the economic, social, political, moral, and even religious questions may be which are being discussed in connection with technological labor or handicraft, none of them reach to the core of the matter. That matter keeps itself hidden in