[-empyre-] Benjamin, Cortázar, tatto
agora158 at gmail.com
Mon Mar 12 23:00:27 EST 2012
This week I feel the discussion is changing tone and adding new voices new
registers new shades of knowledge and feelings. We are having emotions
here, too seldom discussed on electronic exchanges or in cyberculture. I am
one of the few of my generation familiar with videogames, as a woman and as
a writer I has always felt this kind of "otherness". Alicia describes the
loneliness of the cities as opposed to the rural life. I agree and I can
refer to my own experience as science-fiction reader and hardcore gamer.
The game culture is urban, science-fiction is urban as well. Films as Blade
Runner and Avatar are not possible without the metropolis as metaphore.
Ursula Le Guin, one of my favorite writers, an anarchist by own definition
and the daughter of the influential anthropologist Alfred Kroeber, writes
often of urban subjects confronted with new worlds to explore and colonize.
Those new worlds are often pastoral idylls of sheer and eerie atmosphere,
unbroken and free from cities in the way we know cities.
In one of her most known books, "The dispossessed", she writes about
anarchists exiled from Earth (Urras) to the Moon (Anarres) and coming back
to Earth as ambassadors several centuries later.
Anarres has developed an anarchistic and egalitarian society where violence
and social unrest are unknown (but stagnation and bureucracy come with the
package too), Urras is a nightmarish place where war and mayhem rules.
But Le Guin is too skilled as a writer to let her political views be stated
plainly and pamphletaric, she is very keen of present the two societies as
stagnant and frozen in time, utopia is always far from our reach.
"When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with
your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been and there you will always
long to return.
— Leonardo da Vinci
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