«The disciplinary community was born out of the great plague epidemics»

Forfatter: Achille Mbembe
Forlag: La Découverte (Paris)
CONTROL / Today, millions of racialized bodies have become redundant in relation to capital's metabolism and enrolled in a digitally mediated nexus of exclusion, control, and destruction technologies. MODERN TIMES here goes into the theme via author Achille Mbembe in three articles.


Achille Mbembe (b. 1957 in Cameroon), one of the absolute chief names of postcolonial philosophy, has added yet another title to his increasingly extensive and important authorship.

brutalism, as the book is called, draws metaphorical exchanges on the well-known architectural style of the same name that emerged in the 1950s and '60s in the aftermath of Le Corbusier iconic building monuments in béton brut, raw concrete. The ornate and high-fashioned "brutal" style celebrated its triumph in France's post-war society, where new Cite (suburbs) in concrete shot up in a large style in the periphery of Paris and of other large cities.

This particular kind of vertical concrete construction in its time, it was presented as a healthier and more socially harmonious living alternative for working and middle class families in particular – as a place where there was light, air and space to live. Cite today, one of the places where the population is closest, where epidemics hit most, where social contradictions are made clear, where the police discriminate and brutalize most mercilessly and where the freedom of racialized bodies is constantly limited by visible as well as invisible, material and immaterial boundaries. That the space of architecture is fundamentally political, and conversely that governance always presupposes a particular architectural framework for the bodies, is the starting point for Mbembe's reflections on brutalismn.

Brutalism – a new stage in capitalism

The living conditions in which everyday life Cite or in similarly brutalist-inspired environments around the world clarifies is closely associated with a more comprehensive planetary. . .

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