Friday, September 5, 2014

retro-quotes #734

retro-quotes: a series of germane remarks, by others, plucked from all over the place, and from all over the time -#398

"If the past persists in the present, then futurity insists in the present"
 -- Steven Shaviro, Post Cinematic Affect (Zero Books, 2010)

longer version:

"Southland Tales, like most science fiction, is not about literally predicting the future. Rather, it is about capturing and depicting the latent futurity that already haunts us in the present. At one point in the film, the porn actress Krysta Now.... excitedly remarks that 'scientists are saying the future is going to be far more futuristic than they originally predicted.'  The reason this comment is ludicrous is that 'futuristic' is not an objective category, but an anticipatory inflection of the present. Southland Tales is indeed futuristic, in that it shows us an otherness, an elsewhere and elsewhen, that is inextricably woven into the texture of the here and now. We usually think of huantings as traces from the past; but the future also haunts us with its hints of hope and danger, and its promises or threats of transformation. Especially in times of great social and technological change, we feel the imminence of the future in the form of gaps and leaps in temporal progression, and shifts in the horizon of what is thinkable. Of course it is impossible to know what changes the future will bring; but the signs of this impossibility - the intimations of instability, the shifts of perspective, and the incipient breaks in continuity - are themselves altogether real. They are part of the conjucture, part of what shapes the present. If the past persists in the present, then futurity insists in the present, defamiliarizing what we take for granted. Science fiction highlights this sense of futurity, making it visible and audible" 
 -- Steven Shaviro, Post Cinematic Affect (Zero Books, 2010)

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