The cultural critique of “robotization,” “automation,” “computerization,” “the cybernetic society,” “technofascism”—the takeover of human affairs by artificial intelligence—was born of artist/poet William Blake in the 18th century. On page after page of beautifully crabbed script, Blake raged against Reason:
None could break the Web, no wings of fire.
So twisted the cords, & so knotted
The meshes: twisted like to the human brain
And all calld it, The Net of Religion.
Reason’s unceasing urge to quantify Life (“Abstract Philosophy warring in enmity against Imagination”) “withers up the Human Form Divine.” “Beneath the bottom of the Graves, which is Earths central joint,” Blake believed, “There is a place where Contraries are equally true.” Embracing this irrational truth is spiritually liberating:
Spectre of Albion! warlike Fiend!
In cloud of blood & ruin roll’d: