Everybody bitches about modernity, anarchy-primitivists, religious sects, terrorists, counter-revolutionaries of all stripes – they all want to recreate the greatness and wholeness that once existed – before modernity, situated somewhere in a near or distant history of humankind. Some strap bombs to their person, some build their own utopias in the woods, others are starting counter-revolutionary movements – what they share in common is Revolt – the revolt against Modernity.
Modernity has built the modern state as we know it, its political systems and legislative frameworks, economic and social institutions. Cartesian dualism has established the mind as a supreme ruler, while scientific reasoning established man as the ruler of the earth, colonizer and primary subject of history and the universe. Modernity has abolished religion only to enable a new type of faith: faith in the never ending progress of humanity.
Modernity came with a price – a new mass, a structure of industrialization, professionalization and a division of labor that produced not only public hospitals and schools, but a military and cultural system of mass control.
Modernity killed God. Its revolutions have eaten its own children. Its youngest, unwanted child – postmodernity – has tried to liquefy, remix and reassemble the ingredients of modernism in an effort to show that nothing is real, save for the act of remixing itself.
There is nowhere to go, no way back, we’ve reached the end, the zero year of history, in simultaneous time. We deconstructed everything until there was nothing left to feel. Instead of a promised role as the subjects of history, we exist merely as objects of a dehumanized world, clicks that serve a crop-political-media arena, unpaid workers alienated from their own social interactions. We are anxious and lost, on the verge of suicide, hooked to gadgets, pharmaceuticals and old-fashioned drugs, spending our ‘free time’ in sports arenas and entertainment hubs, soul searching in Westernized yoga ashrams with shamans getting us high on ayahuasca, experiencing the world as tourists and terrorists, only to reach the end as a not so specific profile in the niche market of contemporary capitalism.
- Lela Vujanic is a media policy researcher and member of an antifascist network, based in Zagreb, Croatia.