Go to content Go to navigation Go to search

The ten thousand things and the one true only.

by Kip Manley

Table of Contents

Things to keep in mind:
The secret of living later.

But seen from the future it anticipates, sci-fi will inevitably appear as primitive myth. For like all myth, it hangs back from thinking the totality of what it projects – which is to say, total transcendence in the here and now (whose reality will, for the first time ever, make myth itself a thing of the past).

The unthinkable reality of that transcendence is violence. The only way transcendence can remain transcendence once it becomes real (free of myth) is by incorporating within itself a capacity for violent destruction without limit (which for the theological era was equivalent to absolute evil) considered as no more than a dimension of the everyday. The “human” condition of possibility for this is the ability of human subjects to live on, beyond physical destruction. But its implications for human subjectivity remain unexplored. Though the sci-fi hero is always already dead, living later, essentially a late being seen from our present standpoint, sci-fi narratives are spoken by and to a subject for whom that mode of existence remains totally unthinkable.

In sci-fi the violence of transcendence is deflected so that the world and only the world (which includes the bodily reality of the individuals who inhabit it) is exposed to transcendence as violence. Sci-fi is thus essentially nihilistic. It frees the reality of transcendence from the demonization by theology, but merely invites us to contemplate it in the form of endless technological apocalypse.

Michael Holland

—posted 13 days ago

Table of Contents

  Textile Help