The choice of cover image for this issue of e-flux journal came down to two photos: a decrepit military airplane lingering in a remote gray field, evoking long forgotten battles of a distant war; and a picture of a DIY christmas tree, cheerfully constructed from a stack of worn car tires and painted lime green. The airplane was the more haunting of the two images, yet with all that is happening around us, we wanted to resist the sublime spectacle of decimation and consider some modest proposals about how affect, art, humor, and practical resourcefulness can provide solutions to seemingly unsolvable problems and non-problems.
Needless to say: the problems are scary. From violence and apparently constant massacres to the re-establishment of borders and controls of all kinds; from censorship, racist and nationalist rhetoric, to creeping militarization and the mobilization of hundreds of thousands of refugees—all of this is starting to resemble the conditions that preceded the last world war. In the face of all this, how do we go about thinking of a way out?
So what we share with you is this tire tree above, as well as eight new essays by Reza Negarestani, Irmgard Emmelhainz, Jodi Dean, Franco “Bifo” Berardi, Benjamin H. Bratton, Alan Gilbert, Jonas Staal, and Sven Lütticken.
Happy New Year!