dOCUMENTA (13): 100 Notes - 100 Thoughts No. 027 - Bifo - Franco Berardi Ironic Ethics
Bifo’s essay is a critical examination of the current political situation that prevails in his homeland, Italy, where both media and politics have been under the influence of Prime Minister and media magnate Silvio Berlusconi for three decades now. The author draws an image of “Berlusconiland,” where the Italian language—its collective imagination and its sensuousness—has been debased, and where the policies of “Mafia media moguls” take effect like a “psychopoison” that slowly destroys everything. Television and advertisement continuously become more pornographic and obscene, which has led to a form of false “pleasure expectations,” self-hatred, and aggressive shame. Bifo describes the aggressive competition between macho men, whose main pleasure lies in the soiling of the female body—an expression of their all-encompassing scorn for women. Finally, it is neither a moral nor a political ethics that the author proposes as “therapy,” but rather an ethics that begins with skepticism and leads to the reactivation of empathy as a way toward pleasure and “Great Compassion,” which is a political condition.
As a prelude to the 2012 exhibition, dOCUMENTA (13) and Hatje Cantz are publishing a series of notebooks, 100 Notes – 100 Thoughts, that is comprised of facsimiles of existing notebooks, commissioned essays, collaborations, and conversations. The series is edited by Bettina Funcke. The author, media theorist, and activist Bifo – Franco Berardi (*1949), founder of Radio Alice in the 1970s teaches Media Aesthetics at the European School of Social Imagination in San Marino of which he is a co-founder.
Publisher: Hatje Cantz/dOCUMENTA (13)
Dimensions: 150 x 107 mm