[-empyre-] stepping out of the frame to shadow play around

Sean Cubitt sean.cubitt at unimelb.edu.au
Mon Jul 30 06:23:40 EST 2012

sorry for not replying before - having trouble with this mail address (from 1st August my new one is s.cubitt at gold.ac.uk)

in the UK the big issue has been empty seats in olympic stadia, which appear to be those given to sponsors and what is unpleasantly called "the Olympic family" (as Virilio so nearly said, the invention of the railway is the invention of the train wreck, and the invention of the Olympic family is the invention of incest)

The problem ois of course not why the seats of the mega-wealthy are empty, but why the seats of the poor are full. Not because we collude in our own oppression, not this time, not under the neo-conditions of neo-liberalism: it is because we are expected to provide the mass audience which gives sense of occasion for the privileged few. It wouldn't be half as uch fun if you just saw these swimmers in your home pool, or had Mick Jagger sing in the living room. The rich *need* to be envied

which is why Danny Boyle's staging was so much less worse, because in the middle of celebrating the history of the country, he included the tragedy of industrialisation, and the triumph of the National health Service - probably the greatest achievement of the 20th century, just as the public library was the greatest of the 19th

even if the stahed event is part of the ugly celebration of corporatisation of sport, squeezing in this celebration of public health, just as that Adidarse Mitt Romney passed through London and the NHS is under renewed assault was a great example of the under-radar-sneak

my nephew Orlando was one of the cycle-doves: if library and NHS were the greatest instoitutions, the greastest technical inventions were the A-frame bicycle and the cine camera (and because it was given away for free, as another great moment in the Olympic opening, Tim berners-Lee's WWW be thanit


From: empyre-bounces at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au [empyre-bounces at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au] on behalf of Johannes Birringer [Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk]
Sent: 30 July 2012 04:33
To: soft_skinned_space
Subject: Re: [-empyre-] stepping out of the frame to shadow play around

oh, no one was willing to take on the screening of the olympic opening show,
and respond?

I saw that Ai Wei Wei liked it, so he says in The Guardian.
He thought that (at Beijing) "the Chinese ceremony had so much less information and it wasn't even real."

He then says:  "In London there were more close-ups – it didn't show the big formations. It had the human touch...
What I liked most with this was that it always came back to very personal details.
And that's what makes it a nation you can trust; you see the values there.
Anyone who watched it would have a clear understanding of what England is."

I am so relieved now, I will re-watch it [all the bits i missed, like Mr Bean performing with the symphony] on YouTube and
then i'll have an even clearer understanding.

Johannes Birrinegr

Martin Rieser schreibt

Dear list

Thanks for a great discussion. I have been far from email for the past two weeks- so sorry for the limited contribution. Much food for thought


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