Babel, or history repeats itself
The fall of the world that we had been promised at the origin has truly begun. This is the news, as announced by trustworthy whistleblower.
The sight is imposing, biblical. Our world is disappearing under our own incredulous or foolishly indifferent eyes, and a new one is emerging from a cloud of reddish dust, reeking of sulphur and death.
The program of the future is written on ashes. The final battle will be merciless. Nothing will remain of our world, neither ruins, nor memories.
If any survivors are left, they will hide in caves on the edge of the new world, where, little by little, they’ll turn into scavenging insects, or join the mayhem and appoint themselves as kapo assigned to the final solution: the extermination of the infamous masses.
Are we really at this point? This is the question occupying everybody’s mind and making the headlines.
Little do we know about this world, which is gushing forth out of the abyss. Only that it is rising from our ranks, that it’s rather city-like and subtlety slips into an evil fourth dimension, where bewitching prayers and mortifications charge it with poisonous hatred and fill it with the desire to obliterate life.
What is it made of? What is it called?
Since it’s impossible to know or reflect on it any further, let’s call it Islamism, without any additional details, as if an improvised noun could alone signify the misery of the whole world and the folly of mankind.
We need a dictionary of nouns and terms, which is up to date and has been certified as honest. We also need powerful grammar to articulate all the incidentals and precise dates to assign a time to our truths. But all these things are hard to access.
If reality is visible, truth is not. It conceals itself, they conceal it from us and serve us falsities spread on canapés instead. Distraction, distraction!
Camus’s quote ‘To name things wrongly is to add to the misfortune of the world’ has been upturned. Today, they say that dying like a fool increases the faithful’s ecstasy and consigns them directly to heaven, where beatitudes are eternally renewed into the original virginity. Camus underestimated the power of ignorance and the benefits of submission. In this respect, George Orwell showed a lot more lucidity when he said: ‘War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength’. But enough with literary considerations!
Some swear that it’s too late, the incubation has reached a too advanced stage to leave any hope for miracles. The monstrous foetus is formed and is now invincible. It will kill its mother with a single bite, then will come into the light and set off to conquer the world. God is great, the world belongs to its faithful, no doubt is allowed.
Will informants tell us if there’s a way to slay the monster in the end?
They say that the most important thing is to understand our world and how it evolves, but this is not what we believe. Illusion, everything is nothing but illusion.
We can win a war only if we know who we are, what we are fighting for and how much we care that our children are proud of us.
If the beast comes out of our bowels, it means that we contain pathogenic genes. Should we commit suicide to kill the beast too? We fell into disgrace after we stopped listening to the voice that has been calling us towards our cosmic origin from the start. Its name is Freedom, and its spirit is the motherly milk that bestows strength and beauty on us.
The pace of modern life offers no respite to anybody and has a deafening effect. We have to hold our anger back, wipe our tears away and blend with the masses, join the binge consumption dance, keep the beat, listen to pressing pleas, obey orders, do our homework and at the end, worn out and exhausted, kiss the hand that fed us so cheaply and quietly dismiss ourselves.
Claiming to be happy or grateful is not compulsory, but showing a little joy of living and serenity before our fate has its rewards.
Advertising is an ode to happiness. It transforms misfortunes into a beautiful show and fills the void of our lives with emptiness.
We should never forget that the level of satisfaction of single individuals and families is the basis on which interests, dividends and medium and long-term volumes of investments are calculated.
There’s no good master without a good slave, or slaves without enslavers that capture them in their houses, in front of their TV sets, till the end of the world.
This syllogism is even more true when the master is a blind machine endowed with an invisible hand. The capitalistic market corresponds to this description. Religions too.
Honest citizens must not know, must not inquire about the why of things, even less about
the secrets of ‘cookies’. They have to stay focused on their own destinies. They will be anesthetised by soothing speeches about hope, patience, promises, reforms and success. Radio, TV and the Internet were invented for this purpose.
That’s the way it goes and, as soon as we realise it, a thousand questions with no answer will be raised in our minds.
Some claim that God was invented by the system and others that mankind was born from Jupiter’s thigh or is the offspring of God, a compassionate divinity who acknowledges and listens to his progeny.
Little does it matter. We can argue about our ancestry forever. The fact is that men are religious beings, always inclined to extremism and martyrdom. That’s the problem. They don’t live relying on their reason and feet, but on their faith and knees, and this makes them nervous and easily fooled.
Such is the frightening and iridescent fresco that the kaleidoscope of Michela Battaglia and Stefano De Luigi visualise for us. ‘Another ride on the merry-go-round!’. A crazy, multi- layered, vibrant world, exuding colours and bursting with lure, attractive as a banknote, appealing as a sexist advert, and, at the same time, oddly disquieting, lacerated, deeply cold, sad and mortally violent.
It contains all the reality of the world, which has been visually portrayed for the benefit of our children. Thank you, my friends!
Michela and Stefano don’t expressly say it, but they are clearly suggesting it: the chips are down, nobody will be reimbursed.
Boualem Sansal – 2018 April 10
YOU CAN SEE THE STORY HERE AND THE EXHIBITION