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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Deframing techno-coloniality : Sikh spirituality in the age of the technocene Singh, Prabhsharanbir


This dissertation seeks to engage with Martin Heidegger’s critique of modern technology in order to formulate a new conception of coloniality as techno-coloniality. Additionally, it argues that the Sikh spirituality can make a creative contribution towards building a decolonial future based on an alternative conception of technology. Heidegger envisioned Gestell, or Enframing, as the essence of technology which treats everything that exists as merely exploitable resources. This insight is very helpful in rethinking coloniality as techno-coloniality. The disciplines of postcolonial and decolonial studies have not given adequate attention to the question of technology. It has often gone unacknowledged that modern technology is not the only form of technology and that it is unlike other forms of technologies that originated within non-European cultures. What distinguishes modern technology from other technologies is that it is grounded in Western metaphysics. This research establishes that in order to build decolonial futures, it is imperative that the link between Western metaphysics and modern technology are exposed. The promise of decolonial futures can become a concrete historical reality through deframing. Deframing consists of deconstructing the logic of Enframing as well as drawing from alternative cosmologies to build a different conception of technics, for which, I have drawn on the Sikh tradition. I have argued that the Sikh conceptions of nature as Kudrat and labor as kirat can make substantial contributions towards building a decolonial future.

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