The history of the transistor contributes to reassessments of the origins of us hegemony in the 1940s and 1950s. Areas of conflict emerged between us capital and the American state during the World War ii and in the immediate postwar years. Because the transistor evolved as a direct consequence of state investment during these years, the transistor’s history illuminates tensions over military spending and defense production, and the ways in which mncs, academia, and the state overcame tension in the establishment of hegemony.
LevinRichard C.NelsonRichard R“The Semiconductor Industry.”Government and Technical Progress: A Cross-Industry Analysis1982New YorkPergamon Press9100New York University Graduate School of Business Administration Center for Science and Technology Policy
EisenhowerDwight D.“Military-Industrial Complex Speech, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961.”Public Papers of the Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower 19601961Michigan State University10351040(http://coursesa.matrix.msu.edu/~hst306/documents/indust.html).
MisaThomas J.SmithMerritt Roe“Military Needs, Commercial Realities, and the Development of the Transistor, 1948-1958.”Military Enterprise and Technological Change: Perspectives on the American Experience1985Cambridge, Mass.MIT Press254287
Nevertheless as late as1960the military and other government-funded customers purchased half of all transistors manufactured in the United States (Todd 1988).
Eisenhower1961. “The free university” he also noted “historically the fountainhead of free and scientific discovery has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity.”
(Bower1959:32). The article became a source for derision in the official Soviet newspaper Pravda.