Gallery – The Dark Cellars. A Practical Utopian’s Guide to the Coming Collapse. What is a revolution?
We used to think we knew. Revolutions were seizures of power by popular forces aiming to transform the very nature of the political, social, and economic system in the country in which the revolution took place, usually according to some visionary dream of a just society. Nowadays, we live in an age when, if rebel armies do come sweeping into a city, or mass uprisings overthrow a dictator, it’s unlikely to have any such implications; when profound social transformation does occur—as with, say, the rise of feminism—it’s likely to take an entirely different form.
It’s not that revolutionary dreams aren’t out there. But contemporary revolutionaries rarely think they can bring them into being by some modern-day equivalent of storming the Bastille. At moments like this, it generally pays to go back to the history one already knows and ask: Were revolutions ever really what we thought them to be? Revolutions are thus planetary phenomena. A Practical Utopian’s Guide to the Coming Collapse.
A New Era of Global Protest Begins. Protesters demonstrate against austerity in London, June 20, 2015.
(Photo: D B Young / Flickr) Research by Dr. David Bailey provides empirical evidence for what many activists and campaigners have long suspected: that we have entered a prolonged period of dissent characterised by an escalation in the magnitude and diversity of public protest. Zygmunt Bauman interview: Zygmunt Bauman: “Social media are a trap” Zygmunt Bauman has just celebrated his 90th birthday and taken two flights from his home in the northern British city of Leeds to get to an event in Burgos, northern Spain.
He admits to being tired as we begin the interview, but he still manages to express his ideas calmly and clearly, taking his time with each response because he hates giving simple answers to complex questions. Since developing his theory of liquid modernity in the late 1990s – which describes our age as one in which “all agreements are temporary, fleeting, and valid only until further notice” – he has become a leading figure in the field of sociology. Ethereum Project.
Work and Pleasure: Theodor Adorno on the Psychology of “Gadgeteering” and How the Cult of Efficiency Limits Our Happiness. Few thinkers have advanced our understanding of the machinery we call popular culture more than the great German sociologist, philosopher, musicologist, and media critic Theodor Adorno (September 11, 1903–August 6, 1969).
In the 1950s, Adorno embarked upon a rather unusual project: He began analyzing the horoscopes published in the Los Angeles Times as an inquiry into “the nature and motivations of some large-scale social phenomena involving irrational elements … fused with what may be dubbed pseudo-rationality.” From these investigations, eventually published as The Stars Down to Earth and Other Essays on the Irrational in Culture (public library), sprang expansive and enduring insight into many of the myths that bedevil modern culture and still limit our lives on a daily basis.
In a magnificent essay titled “Work and Pleasure,” Adorno dissects one of the most perilous such modern myths — the tyranny of work/life balance. Labor-saving devices … are invested with a halo of their own.
On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs. Ever had the feeling that your job might be made up?
That the world would keep on turning if you weren’t doing that thing you do 9-5? Anthropology professor and best selling author David Graeber explored the phenomenon of bullshit jobs for our recent summer issue – everyone who’s employed should read carefully… On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs by David Graeber. In the year 1930, John Maynard Keynes predicted that technology would have advanced sufficiently by century’s end that countries like Great Britain or the United States would achieve a 15-hour work week. There’s every reason to believe he was right. Why did Keynes’ promised utopia – still being eagerly awaited in the ‘60s – never materialise? So what are these new jobs, precisely? These are what I propose to call “bullshit jobs.” A Practical Utopian’s Guide to the Coming Collapse – David Graeber on “The Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs”
Graeber’s argument is similar to one he made in a 2013 article called “On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs”, in which he argued that, in 1930, economist John Maynard Keynes predicted that by the end of the century technology would have advanced sufficiently that in countries such as the UK and the US we’d be on 15-hour weeks.
“In technological terms, we are quite capable of this. And yet it didn’t happen. Instead, technology has been marshalled, if anything, to figure out ways to make us all work more. Huge swaths of people, in Europe and North America in particular, spend their entire working lives performing tasks they believe to be unnecessary. The moral and spiritual damage that comes from this situation is profound. But what happened between the Apollo moon landing and now? Graeber believes that since the 1970s there has been a shift from technologies based on realising alternative futures to investment technologies that favoured labour discipline and social control.
Networks vs. Socialism For Dummies. Socialism For Dummies - part 2. Independent global leaders working together for peace and human rights.