Ever since people learned to fight autocracy and oppressive regimes, the battle has raged between ‘accommodationists’ and revolutionaries. The first ones pleaded for dialogue and used, if necessary, civil disobedience. The others discounted protest as ineffectual and called for outright revolution.
Behold America: A history of America First and the American Dream (Sarah Churchwell, 2018, p. 356):
History is not ancestral memory or collective tradition. It is what people learned from priests, schoolmasters, the writers of history books and the compilers of magazine articles and television programmes.
I have attended a seminar on the subject of “Democratizing public space”. This is the text of my intervention. I argued, somewhat paradoxically, that “public space” is shaped by “what is not seen” more than by the explicit will of the people or rulers. My thoughts are an attempt to flesh out BASTIAT’s recommendation, namely to study what is “not seen” rather than what is “seen”.
Today’s system of “multi-stakerism” is a travesty in this respect. It reflects the malign neglect/scrutiny of governments (more than happy doing their profiling/censoring unhindered) and the self-serving bullying of the internet companies. Users urgently need a sustainable legitimated forum.
I’ve pointed out previously that “war” covers two very different kinds of affray: raids and conquest. This distinction is fundamental – yet it is hardly mentioned in international fora dealing with international and humanitarian law.
I perused the UNESCO World Heritage list, recently. As I scrolled the “properties” that made it, I asked myself: would my life change in any way, were these cultural sites to disappear, one and all? The honest answer is: I’d feel sad, but my life would go on as before. The criteria for inclusion sound impressive… good for hiding the fact that these “properties” are just baubles. What I’m saying is counterintuitive.