|The Revenge of Athena
and the Third World
The Revenge of Athena
and the Third World
Edited by Ziauddin Sardar
Mansell Publishing Limited
London and New York
First published 1988
by Mansell Publishing Limited, A Cassell Imprint
Artillery House, Artillery Row, London SWIP IRT, England
125 East 23rd Street, Suite 300, New York 10010, U.S.A.
@ Ziauddin Sardar, Third World Network, Consumers' Association of Penang and contributors 1988
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording or any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers or their appointed agents.
British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data
The Revenge of Athena: science, exploitation and the Third World.
1. Developing countries. Society. Effects of technological development.
I. Sardar, Ziauddin
Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data
The Revenge of Athena: science, exploitation, and the Third World/edited by
p . cm.
Partly based on a Consumer Association of Penang (CAP)
seminar, held 21‑26 Nov. 1986 in Penang, Malaysia.
Includes bibliographies and index.
ISBN 0‑7201‑1891‑3: $60.00 (U.S. : est.)
1. Science‑ Developing countries. 2. Science‑Developing countries‑
International cooperation. 3. Science‑Philosophy. 4. Science‑ Social aspects.
303.4'83'091724‑dcl9 88‑19216 CIP
This book has been printed and bound in
Great Britain. Typeset in English Times by
Colset (Private) Ltd., Singapore, and printed
and bound by the Camelot Press, Southampton,
on Solent Wove paper.
for Uncle Idris
Introduction The Revenge of Athena, Ziauddin Sardar 1
Part One What's Wrong with Science? 21
1. Science and Ideology The Marxist Perspective, Glyn Ford 23
2. Science, Ignorance and Fantasies, Jerome R. Ravetz 33
3. Radical Sociology of Science From Critique
to Reconstruction, Alejandro Gustavo Piscitelli 41
Part Two Science and Third World Domination 53
4. Science and Control Natural Resources and theirExploitation,
J. Bandyopadhyay and V. Shiva 55
5. Science and Control How Indian Atomic Energy Policy
Thwarted Indigenous Scientific Development, Dhirendra Sharma 73
6. Science and Control Sex, Race and the New Biology,
Munawar Ahmad Anees 81
7. Science and Efficiency Exploding a Myth, Rakesh Kumar Sinha 97
8. Science and Health Medicine and Metaphysics, Ziauddin Sardar 106
9. Science and Health The Redundancy of Drugs, Claude Alvares 121
10. Science and Hunger A Historical Perspective on the Green
Revolution, J.K. Bajaj 131
11. Science and Hunger Plant Genetic Resources and the
Impact of New Seed Technologies, Lawrence Surendra 157
12. Science and Development Trends and outcomes of the
Transfer of Technology in the 1980s, David Burch 178
13. Science and Development Underdeveloping the Third
World, Khor Kok Peng 207
Part Three Third World Possibilities Critique and Direction 217
14. New Paradigm Thinking We Have Been Here Before,
Claude Alvares 219
15. A Project for Our Times, Susantha Goonatilake 226
16. Islamic Science, Western Science CommonHeritage,
Diverse Destinies, Seyyed Hossein Nasr 239
17. IslamicScience Current Thinking and Future Directions,
Munawar Ahmad Anees and Merryl Wyn Davies 249
18. Logical and Methodological Foundations of Indian Science,
M.D. Srinivas 261
19. Appropriate Technology A Reassessment, Amulya Kumar
N. Reddy 290
20. Traditional is Appropriate Ecologically Balanced
in Sri Lanka, G.K. Upawansa 309
21. Traditional is Appropriate Lessons from Traditional
Irrigation and Eco‑systems, D.L.O. Mendis 316
Appendix The Penang Declaration on Science and Technology 323
Claude Altars, an independent journalist and radical philosopher, is a frequent contributor to Indian Express and the Illustrated Weekly of India and is the author of the highly acclaimed Homo Faber: Technology and Culture in India, China and the West, 1500 to the Present Day, 1979.
Manawa Ahmad Andes is a biologist and Director of Research and Development at East‑West University, Chicago. He is the author of Guide to Sera and Habit Literature in Western Languages, 1986, and the forthcoming Islam and Biological Futures.
J.K. Baja is Assistant Editor of Indian Express, New Delhi.
J. Bandyopadhyay is attached to the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and National Resource Policy, India.
David Burch is Lecturer at the School of Science, Griffith University, Australia.
Melvyn Wynn Davies, anthropologist and journalist is the author of Knowing One Another: Shaping an Islamic Anthropology, 1988.
Glyn Ford, formerly with the Department of Liberal Studies on Science, University of Manchester, now represents Greater Manchester in the European Parliament.
Susantha Goonatilake is President of the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science. His books include Aborted Discovery: Science and Creativity in the Third World, 1984, and Crippled Minds: An Exploration into Colonial Culture, 1982.
D.L.O. Mendis is President of the Institution of Engineers, Colombo, Sri Lanka.
Seyyed Hussein Nasr is Professor of Islamic Studies at the George Washington University, Washington, D.C., and is the author of Science and Civilization
in Islam, 1986, Islamic Science: An Illustrated Study, 1976, and many other books.
Khor Kok Peng is Research Director of the Consumers' Association of Penang, Malaysia.
Alejandro Gustavo Piscitelli is Assistant Professor in the Sociology Department, Universidad Nacional de Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Jerome R. Ravetz, formerly Reader in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Leeds, is the author of the classic study, Scientific Knowledge and its Social Problems, 1972. He now works as an independent consultant on risks.
Amulya Kumar N. Reddy is Director of the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India. He edited Rural Technology, 1980, and authored many papers on alternative technology.
Ziauddin Sardar is Director of the Center for Policy and Future Studies, East West University, Chicago, and is the author of Science, Technology and Development in the Muslim World, 1977, Science and Technology in the Middle East, 1982, and several other books.
Dhirendra Sharma, India's foremost expert on nuclear risks teaches at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Author of numerous books on the Indian nuclear industry, he edits the quarterly journal, Philosophy and Social Action.
V. Shiva is attached to the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and National Resource Policy, India.
Rakesh Kumar Sinha is at the Institute of Technology, Benares Hindu University, India.
M.D. Srinivas is Director of PPST Foundation, Madras, India.
Lawrence Surendra is Co‑ordinator of the Asian Regional Exchange for New Alternatives in Manila, Philippines.
G.K. Upawansa is a consultant at the National Engineering Research and Development Centre of Sri Lanka.
The Revenge of Athena