2014-02-02

1426 Billionaires

Talking about migration is meaningless without also talking about the most important of all migrations nowadays: that of capital. In fact the migration of capital is complementary to the migration of people; one cannot be understood without the other. As predicted by Karl Marx (Critique of Political Economy, 1867), capitalism implies that people become more and more things, commodities, that is to say, capital. The migration of people is therefore ultimately one side of the migration of capital. But here we are especially interested in the other side of the coin, in the reciprocal phenomenon: the migration of abstract, volatile capital. Yet this capital is not as abstract as one might think; at the end of the road there are also people of flesh and blood to which this capital returns.

Images [aw] based on data from Forbes' The World's Billionaires list (2013).

Here Earned

Image [aw] after data from Forbes' The World's Billionaires list (2013) and Gunter Demnig's Stolpersteine (1992-2014) [fu/fd].

2014-02-01

Hier Landete

Among the numerous Holocaust memorials the Stolpersteine by the artist Gunter Demnig produce a particular impression. As known, they commemorate in hundreds of European towns the victims of Nazi genocide, in the form of brass paving stones placed in front of their homes, before they were deported to the concentration camps. Let's say first that our project applauds this initiative and recognizes its contribution to the struggle against injustices and the memory of the victims. And yet nowadays other deportations, other concentration camps, other holocausts continue to happen. Friedrich Nietzsche taught us (On the Advantage and Disadvantage of History for Life, 1874) that History makes no sense as a death discipline documenting the past, but it should be a living source to act in the present. In this sense, unfortunately often historical rigor is instrumentalized, certain events of the past are privileged, certain groups are victimized. In short, monuments commemorating past injustices are used as a pretext for, somehow, mask present holocausts. But in fact these past events and the present ones are too much similar to be justifiable to look to other way, even when this looking to other way is commemorating any type of victims. Indeed, if commemorating injustices of the past is necessary, it is even more necessary, since they can still be partially avoided, to give visibility to the injustices happening in the present.

Image [aw] after Gunter Demnig's Stolpersteine (1992-2014) [fu/fd] and data from CIA's illegal flights [fu/fd].