James Burke lecture “Axmakers of the Twenty-first Century” at Ball State University, 1992

James Burke, Great Britain’s foremost commentator on science and technology, maintains that history is the result of “nudges”–Small events which trigger monumental chain reactions that in turn determine the course of mankind. Beginning with the stone ax “nudge” Burke examines the scientific and technological developments of other nudges and the way society changed as a result. Discusses the propagation of the artistic vs. scientific mind-set and the pros and cons of what he believes to be the next hand-ax phenomenon–the combining of data processing systems and telecommunications. Presented as a keynote address during Ball State’s UniverCity 1992.