Dec 17, 2007

a golden age of dystopia

Literary apocalypse now, and then

"I think that we might be living in interesting times. I know that writers with pretensions to be cultural commentators have said the same thing about the circumstances of their generation from the cold war right back until Cicero first cried out "O tempores. O mores", but this time I really do reckon I'm right.

"Of course, that I find our own times so troublesome and unique could just be the natural result of living through them. All the same, we do face some pretty bracing circumstances. There's the threat of imminent environmental catastrophe for a start. There's the ongoing "war" against an invisible and almost mythical terrorist enemy and new security regulations that make us all suspects. Plus, who wouldn't feel discomfited by the speed of technological advance in our society? I can't even begin to understand the inner workings of the computer that I use for work every single day... And the model I'm using is already obsolete.

"In short, I increasingly feel like I could be living in a dystopian novel..."

(Sam Jordison, for the Guardian)

No comments: