Personal and academic blog. Explores the borderlands between rhetoric, politics and intelligence.


Destroy all lines - a leap of faith

Today I read Chuck Palahniuk's Nonfiction. Being the author behind 'Fightclub' he is a voice for the post-modern anomie, the state of modern boredom and desperation or whatever you would like to call it. He is excellent at giving a voice to the sense of directionlessness and unfulfilled longing that most urban male youths have felt at some time or another.

In one of his essays he mentions the philosopher Søren Kierkegaard and his concept of the leap of faith. He states that breaking the law is an inescapable duty of man as to demonstrate that he is free, even though it destroys him in the process. The example is Adam in paradise that, when given the only rule 'don't off the tree' breaks it to prove that he is free (and thus human one could say) but is cast out of paradise for the selfsame reason.

The London bombers apparently were young men, awokened to a jihadist, extremist ideology that led them to become suicide destructors. And it all gave a little more sense after reading Palahniuk. Because haven't all the unsatisfied youths longed for that ideology that would be an organ to play or be played by and thereby letting off the steam that threatens to tear a heart from the inside with tail-chasing frustration. The London bombers found their ideology. They rebelled against an unbendable law 'you must not kill', were free as individuals and died of it. Luckily most other uneasy young men keep it to fighting, copulating, drinking and whatever takes their mind off things...

Of course fundamentalist religion fits really bad with post-modern urban anarchy. But that these fusions happen is the truly mind-boggling thing about the jihadist movement and all those others who oposes the post-modern anomie. In all their anti-(post)modernity they become truly post-modern themselves.

(Destroy all lines is a song by Ben Wa - you can download it for free here)


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