The sixteenth thesis is the theory-praxis principle (on the duality of ... there is likewise its practical application, both technical and normative.
Author: Peter Baofu
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
Category: Juvenile Nonfiction
Can transportation really have such a destructive impact on society that, as Jay Holtz Kay (1998) once forcefully wrote, with the automobile industry as an example, that “the modern consequences of heavy automotive use contribute to the use of non-renewable fuels, a dramatic increase in the rate of accidental death, social isolation, the disconnection of community, the rise in obesity, the generation of air and noise pollution, urban sprawl, and urban decay”? (WK 2012) This negative expectation from transportation, with the automobile industry as an example here, can be contrasted with an opposing (positive) expectation in the old “glory days” when, as Skip McGoun (2012) thus reminded us, “we have sung songs about the glory and wonder that surrounds the very concept of the car. Examples of this range from the 1909 tune, ‘In My Merry Oldsmobile,’ to what is considered to be the first rock and roll song, ‘Rocket 88,’ in 1949. . . . Motion pictures have portrayed . . . expensive sleek sports cars . . . associated with wealth and success. . . . One commercial described Hell as being a place where a teenager would have to drive a minivan!” Contrary to these opposing expectations (and other views as will be discussed in the book), transportation, in relation to both networks and operations, is neither possible or impossible, nor desirable or undesirable, to the extent that the respective ideologues on different sides would like us to believe. This challenge to the opposing expectations from transportation does not mean that transportation is useless, or that those interdisciplinary fields (related to transportation studies) like urban planning, environmental sustainability, migration, tourism, transport economics, traffic engineering, transportation technology, energy efficiency, the tragedy of the commons, and so on are unimportant. Needless to say, neither of these extreme views is reasonable. Rather, this book offers an alternative, better way to understand the future of transportation, especially in the dialectic context of networks and operations—while learning from different approaches in the literature but without favoring any one of them or integrating them, since they are not necessarily compatible with each other. More specifically, this book offers a new theory (that is, the panoramic theory of transportation) to go beyond the existing approaches in a novel way. If successful, this seminal project is to fundamentally change the way that we think about transportation in relation to networks and operations from the combined perspectives of the mind, nature, society, and culture, with enormous implications for the human future and what the author originally called its “post-human” fate.