Chapter 3 and portions of Chapter 4 from Jean-Marc Mandosio’s book, Après l'effondrement: notes sur l'utopie néotechnologique (Éditions de l'Encyclopédie des Nuisances, 2000), in which the author discusses the disastrous effects of what he calls “neotechnology” on the human species and how these disasters are imposed as wonderful innovations in all domains, from music and books to genetic engineering, resulting in a “four-fold collapse” affecting the human perception of time and space, the ability to think, and “the very idea of humanity itself”.
Six short texts from a book published in 2012 (Anti-developmentalist Perspectives) largely based on talks given in 2009-2010 on the topic of the need for a transition from the economically, environmentally and spiritually unviable city-centered system of globalized capitalism to a new territorial dispersal of human society and productive activities, attaining a higher synthesis of the restoration of the liberating aspects of the city (freedom, public space) and the traditional virtues of the “territory” (local production, self-sufficiency) that can only be brought about by an anti-capitalist revolution.
Translated in January 2014 from the Spanish original as published in: Miguel Amorós, Perspectivas Antidesarrollistas, Editorial Germinal, Valle Maipo Bioregion, Winter 2012.
The above book is available online (January 2014) at: http://editorialgerminal.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/amorc3b3s.pdf
In these notes for a 2006 talk, Miquel Amorós depicts primitivism as an example of “false consciousness and ideological deviation” whose initial “kernel of truth” in the 1990s (its fervent opposition to development) was annulled in the next decade when the movement “rejected the idea of revolution” and “fell into a paralyzing fatalism” that keeps the primitivist, who identifies “the humanization of the world with … the domestication and artificialization of man”, “in a state of waiting, hedonistically expecting that a catastrophe will resettle a disillusioned humanity in the aboriginal jungle and put rational thought back on the road of instinct, magic and voodoo”.
Primitivism in Technological Society – Miquel Amorós
“I am as free as nature first made man,
Ere the base laws of servitude began,
When wild in woods the noble savage ran.”
“The Conquest of Granada”, John Dryden, 17th century
An annotated synopsis of the views of Günther Anders on the question of “work” or “labor”, including numerous quotations from Anders published here in English for the first time (which the author claims “are undoubtedly among the most radical and best examples of the critique of labor that appeared during the 20th century”), along with many choice selections from his pithy observations regarding conformism, technology, “duty”, “the right to a job”, “the humanization of labor”, consumerism, television, sports, etc., which in many respects anticipate some of the ideas later advocated by Guy Debord and the situationists.
Work Will Not Set You Free: Notes on Günther Anders – Franz Schandl
A short 2002 article by Robert Kurz on the hype about the information society, with its “knowledge degraded into ‘information’”, its dystopian implications with regard to culture and individual integrity, and its disappointingly meager impact on the economy (Marx: knowledge has “no exchange value”), which it was supposed to rejuvenate (“the New Economy … began to collapse as soon as it was proclaimed”).
The Ignorance of the Society of Knowledge – Robert Kurz
An essay on the contemporary crisis (“the real crisis”) as the assault of capitalism against “the territory”, defined in the sense of land in its socially balanced and natural determinations (“metabolism with nature”) as opposed to the commodity real estate, the false, one-sided opposition movements (technocratic tinkering and misanthropic primitivism) that have arisen in response to this crisis, and the possible solution to the crisis that consists in a movement for a “predominantly rural, horizontal and egalitarian” society based on “renewable energies”, “ecological agriculture”, “public transport” and “local production”, among other things.
The War Against Territory, the Highest Stage of Domination – Miguel Amorós
Notes on the current crisis, considered in accordance with its ancient medical definition as “the culminating point of an illness” (Hippocrates) whose symptoms are “loss of memory, dissolution of classes, individualism, narcissism, degradation of language, functional illiteracy, fear [and] domestication”, along with ecological, urban and political crises on a planetary scale, which cannot be overcome by traditional political or trade union means but require the constitution of neighborhood communities resulting from “desertion or exclusion”, and a dual urban/rural focus, at first dominated by the urban struggle, that aims at “de-urbanization” and defense of “territory”.
Capitalism, Therefore Crisis - Miguel Amorós
“Life is short, and Art long; the crisis fleeting; experience perilous, and decision difficult.”
An examination of the history and significance of the concept of “progress”, its origins as an expression of the Enlightenment’s battle against religious bigotry and ignorance, its transformation into a “new [scientific] superstition” characterized by indifference to nature and the worship of technological change, and its current status as “a threat to the survival of the human species”.
Midnight in the Century – Notes against Progress – Miguel Amorós
The introductory essay of the first issue of the journal, Encyclopédie des Nuisances (The Encyclopedia of Nuisances, or Encyclopedia of Harmful Phenomena), published by the group of the same name in 1984.
Preliminary Discourse – Encyclopédie des Nuisances
Part One (Encyclopédie des Nuisances, No. 1, pages 3 to 10)
As mainstream discourse again shifts towards a discussion of automation, @Aut_Omnia examines its mechanics, human cost and utopian potential.
Man as Machine.
“The man of virtuous soul commands not, nor obeys:
Power, like a desolating pestilence,
Pollutes whate'er it touches, and obedience,
Bane of all genius, virtue, freedom, truth,
Makes slaves of men, and, of the human frame,
A mechanised automaton.”1