"New worlds require new cosmogonies. New cosmogonies, as narrative artefacts, require new mythopoetic creations to emerge. At a time when the old world appears to be dying, and the new one is still struggling to be born, the creation of mythical narratives that might be capable of crossing the boundaries between worlds takes on a crucial importance." (Federico Campagna)
As Max Weber pointed out (Science as a Vocation, 1917), the Industrial Revolution's purpose was to disenchant the world. Mythological thinking was doomed in the reality of steam engines, factories, and looms. Technocratic European rationality seemed to have triumphed — the world had changed, and old-fashioned tales of monsters had become historical artifacts. And yet myth has never gone away. It has only changed its appearance, becoming one of the most important cultural forms of the 20th century. In Ernst Cassirer’s The Technique of Modern Political Myths, 1946, modern myth is a chimera born from the cross-breeding of the traditional elements of myth with technology and the public authorities. Modernity has formed a new cosmogony, inside of which exists our everyday lives.
NEW NOW programme will be launched with a discussion on what is contemporary mythmaking and can mythological thinking resist the disintegration of reality on a global level and on the level of everyday actions? How can radical mythology help us to adapt to global climate change, decrease inequality, and promote a feminist agenda? And what cultural “traces” we will be leaving behind for the generations that come after us?
A conversation between Federico Campagna, Reza Negarestani and Sarah Shin; moderated by Alexander Vileykis