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J. G. Ballard

"JGB: Nothing is ever terminal, thank God. As we hesitate, the road unrolls itself, dividing and turning. But there is something deeply suffocating about life today in the prosperous west. Bourgeoisification, the suburbanisation of the soul, proceeds at an unnerving pace. Tyranny becomes docile and subservient, and a soft totalitarianism prevails, as obsequious as a wine waiter. Nothing is allowed to distress and unsettle us. The politics of the playgroup rules us all. The chief role of the universities is to prolong adolescence into middle age, at which point early retirement ensures that we lack the means or the will to enforce significant change. When Markham (not JGB) uses the phrase 'upholstered apocalypse' he reveals that he knows what is really going on in Chelsea Marina. That is why he is drawn to Gould, who offers a desperate escape." Age of Unreason, The Guardian


"A century is a long time. Twenty years ago no one could have imagined the effects the internet would have - entire relationships flourish, friendships prosper on the e-mail screen, there's a vast new intimacy and accidental poetry (from the osprey-tracking site to tours round old nuclear silos and the extraordinary aerial trip down the California coastline and a thousand others), not to mention the weirdest porn. The entire human experience seems to unveil itself like the surface of a new planet." Age of Unreason, The Guardian


"... posed the question: could consumerism turn into fascism? The underlying psychologies aren't all that far removed from one another. If you go into a huge shopping mall and you're looking down the parade, it's the same theatrical aspect: these disciplined ranks of merchandise, all glittering like fascist uniforms. When you enter a mall, you are taking part in a ceremony of affirmation, which you endorse just by your presence." Strange Fiction, , The Guardian




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