provocative optimism

i was re-reading through city of panic by french philosopharchitect paul virilio. especially when he mentions karlheinz stockhausen’s comment on 9/11 and how it was, according to the musician, ‘the greatest work of art ever made.’

nowadays we are all aware of what isis (isil, is … the name apparently changes more than the weather in scotland) is in as much as we are constantly reminded of potential bombing attacks in cities such as london or rome. i was actually struck by the fact that a week after the attacks in paris the city centre of rome was deserted by people, even though monuments where open over night. i was said from friends in rome that most of them no longer use the subway or hardly go to clubs in the city centre.

to look at this with some provocative optimism: as long as the city centre seems to be very dangerous, may it be the case that people start exploring often forgotten and excluded peripheral areas of the city (and their inhabitants) that nowadays are probably perceived as less dangerous as city centres? perhaps the most artistic aspect of this living under the constant presence of a potential bombing attack is the fact that it exposes a certain status symbol inherent in everyday life…

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