Burn. Object. If.
Author(s)Brinkema, Eugenie Alexandra
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The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire. The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire. The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire. We don’t need no water let the motherfucker burn. Burn, motherfucker, burn. —Bloodhound Gang, “Fire Water Burn,” by way of Rock Master Scott & the Dynamic Three1 “Now one can understand Kandinsky’s famous question: if the object is destroyed, what should replace it?” —Michel Henry, Seeing the Invisible2 Burn, motherfucker, burn The problem, as Émile Cioran insists, is that “La mort est trop exacte; toutes les raisons se trouvent de son côté.”3 It has the all of certainty on its side. If the object is destroyed The idealism of sustainability discourses—sustained by notions of futurity, preservation, duration, continuation, endurance, but also production and productivity over time, healthy diversity, maintenance, memory, but also imaginary projection, an ethic toward built and natural environments, therefore mutuality between generations, therefore compromise—each attempting to stave off future disaster (or the future as disaster), the finitude of the species, the finitude of the planet—involves an avowal of futurity, a temporal promise, a common interest, an ideological drive, and anxiety about seeping forms of waste, insufficiency, inefficiency, indolent responses to crisis, suppuration, the untenable, the intolerable, disrepair, dissolution, decomposition—tracking all possible paths of foundational destruction, every thinker a wary termitologist.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Humanities. Literature Section
Brinkema, Eugenie. "Burn. Object. If." World Picture 5:spring (2011). © World Picture 2011.
Final published version