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Mumford Warns of 'Mega-Machine; Criticizes Chaos of Youth Revolt


"Madness and non-intelligence is not a sufficient answer to the excess intelligence of today's "Mega-Machine," philosopher Lewis Mumford warned last night.

"I can understand the chaotic form that the youthful rebellion has taken, and in a sense it is justifide," he told a densely-packed audience in the Leverett House Old Library. "But chaos is not a response to regimentation, it is its opposite face" he added.

The 71-year-old author reflected that "for the past 30 years, I have been engaged in a fruitless effort to save Rome." Like Rome, Mumford maintained modern society "is drifting from bad to worse," refusing to learn the lessons of the past, forcing "life from its side."


According to Mumford, the spread of science and technology is creating a "universal, but inadequate society," what he terms the "Mega-Machine." Unlike previous systems of oppression, the Mega-Machine is not based upon a principle of punishment, but on the contrary idea of reward.

"The Mega-Machine," Mumford explained in his deep, articulate rumble, "offers endless material abundance for all abundance beyond even the dreams of the Ford Foundation.

This "varsity rich," but "totalitarian system," will free men from the compulsion to work, -- automation and eybernetice will take care of production -- only to replace it with the compulsion to consume."


"The awakening of youth, its internal revolt, is a sign of a healthy defiance," Mumford said. "The weird haircuts, the outlandish dress announce their refusal to have anything to do with a slick, mech-

But, according to Mumford this rebellion has been expressed in the "language anized, automated world." of the body, a language all creature resort to when they have no words to express themselves."

"The answer to an emotionally castrated intelligence -- the definition of the Ph.D. -- is not irrationality, but a higher type of intelligence."

"The response to sexual repression, is not promiscuity, but an enrichment of sex, it should be compeld to the mind and carried into every corner of life not allowed to spill over the landscape."

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