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j g ballard

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Trust Johann Hari to write the best thing on the recent death of the inimitable J G Ballard.  

Ballard had a low view of humanity, he offered scathing critiques of consumerism, culture, society, and our relationship to the earth.  

He sees violence beneath the veneer of suburban life —

“The suburbs dream of violence. Asleep in their drowsy villas, sheltered by benevolent shopping malls, they wait patiently for the nightmares that will wake them into a more passionate world…”

“We’re like bored children. We’ve been on holiday for too long, and we’ve been given too many presents… People are re-primitivising themselves. The future is going to be a struggle between vast systems of competing psychopathies, part of a desperate attempt to escape from a rational world and the boredom of consumerism.”

The shopping mall was the endgame of the enlightenment —

“the great dream of the Enlightenment, that reason and rational self-interest would one day triumph. [It] led directly to today’s consumerism.” 

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Written by Peter Rudd

April 21, 2009 at 8:50 pm

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