To read recent events in this way is to miss the mark, to be deaf to the world, and hence, to be as caught off-guard by events as professionals in the United States foreign intelligence services have been over the years. The collapse of a civilization isn’t just a mass extinction of coral, bats, and forests, but also the withering of the certainties to which this civilization was tethered, the fissuring of the grounds that gave sense to what was done and what was known. If those ideas of revolution were always wrong, today they’re doubly wrong, and it’s obvious that we need entirely new conceptions of revolution, conceptions beginning from existence and not its abstraction. Following a line of power? Cooking a thousand ćevapčići? Destituent power? Building barricades? An idea of happiness? Survival tactics, forever? Cooking ten thousand варе́ники? Ethical revolt? Self-organized triage units? An art of civil war? Revolution as just a technique? A new SENSIBLE education?
Series Info: The great flood, the zombie hordes, the next Sandy or Katrina. This ongoing series considers a new geological epoch in which humans have impacted Earth to a stratigraphically greater degree than any other currently active natural process or form. Populating this age, is a civilization ordered around the modern individual, one working desperately to hold itself together, endlessly laboring to master the environment and itself beyond its bounds. But the naming of the Anthropocene comes not to announce humankind’s triumph but rather its exhaustion (at least according to the structure by which it has long pretended to abide). Marked by kilometers of receding ice and lengths of coastline lost to the sea, the growth of the desert, the expansion of pharmaceuticals (for humans, for pets, for plants), and the very existence of the film Her, the Anthropocene claims all as part of the same disaster, a metaphysical historical disaster, that is the very texture and environment of our lives.
A shared sense of this situation has, since childhood, permeated our everyday lives, but our grandparents and their grandparents before them have also perceived civilization’s end whether or not they ever registered it cognitively. A key goal of this series will be to start putting words to this feeling, to make it concrete, to develop a language, parameters, and a strategy for this new reality. We want to force this question, recognize this reality: Now that we are living in a ruin, HOW ARE WE TO LIVE IN A RUIN?