Film and video fit into this new hyper-mythology. Video became the go-to medium for us to communicate and express ourselves. Except video itself comes intrinsically bound up in mythology.
We're all used to the tropes of cinema now, we utilise them ourselves, the slow motion, the time-lapse. The parts of the story we decide to keep offscreen. The tropes of good and evil. So in a way, the language of film helps shapes our oppositional understanding of morality, sameness and otherness.
In a recent essay
, I used the swarming insect as a way to talk about what I saw as the increasingly technocratic ownership of language and the resulting dictatorial drivers of perception and understanding.
What are the intangibles that drive a swarm forward? That cause it to move or find a new home, or attack.
We know about the Queen, she generally runs the show, there are many workers and carers and builders.
These swarming insects often build cities. Or at least a city that becomes home for a time until it is no longer of use. Often because of changes in the immediate environment, so after a while and some serious living and activity, the swarm eventually moves on to find a new spot to make a home. A swarm moves with certain physics and intuitions and basic biological reactions.
So while thinking about the physics of insect swarms as a metaphor for language, I decided to appropriate the concept of the singularity. Yes, I grew up watching a lot of science fiction, can't you tell?
The Singularity is ordinarily discussed as the moment the automated processes and intelligence we have constructed outrun our own neural capacities and accelerates off in its own sentience, nurtured by what we taught it and then goes on to determine what the world will be.
It occurred to me we might already be within that process, and our relinquished, dreams desires and thoughts are now the fuel that drives this process. The problem is we don't know what the end game is here, as we don't seem to have control, certainly not of language.
So if we can see this swarm as the singularity, who is at the wheel? Who is determines its physics and drives it forward and is it being fuelled by the stories we tell ourselves until we don't actually understand the stories we are telling ourselves and each other.
For example, if I made a google search on the many histories of the West African Shona spirit. I wouldn't find that much and I guess we know why that is.
We're increasingly reliant on an information age that is incomplete.
So what this does is lead us through a predetermined existence that is based on flawed and incomplete information and yes, myths about history.
And in the case of those that have been traditionally marginalised from a western perspective, they don't tend to form much of the demographic that now dictates language, namely Silicon Valley.
So why would we expect the owners of language and information to have the best interests of the marginalised or disadvantaged at heart?
And why would the AI built fundamentally be different, given, for example, racial bias already found in ai and machine learning
I'd go as far as to argue vulnerable or marginalised groups shouldn't use corporate platforms at all as the bad increasingly outweighs the good in the era of surveillance capitalism and closing borders.
There is no way one of little power can win relying on our existing language.
Political systems and governments have been bought by corporations as is clear given the lax and even sinister moral position taken by some.
I need not name any names.