Abstract for Roundtable Discussion

Technochauvinism, or the idea that technology is always the superior means of attaining an end, is a flawed ideology that has a disturbing amount of overlap with traditional male chauvinism. A common opinion among male chauvinists is that women are inferior to men due to some sort of emotional fragility that prevents them from being as logical as men. With technochauvinism, it is thought that the computer should reign supreme due to its ability to reduce any issue to supposedly-objective, unbiased numbers and mathematics. Technochauvinism, by ignoring or otherwise cutting out human components of analysis and problem solving, can’t help but ignore or cut out concepts such as culture, race, and gender.

Digital technology is created by human beings: human beings with biases and emotions. A computer error is largely the direct result of human error. This paper aims to not only show how male chauvinism can dangerously factor into technochauvinism, but also show that technochauvinism “on its own” impedes feminism in ways not unlike traditional male chauvinism. Ultimately, I wish to present an argument that in order for feminist digital text analysis to be performed, it must be approached in a manner that avoids technochauvinist bias or in a manner where one is aware of technochauvinist bias: to allow a feminist analysis to be affected by technochauvinist bias is undesirable in the same manner as allowing a feminist analysis to be affected by male chauvinist bias.