Paul Virillo’s Open Sky: Part II

Once again, Paul Virillo displayed his complex philosophies towards the world and how human population functions in Part II of Open Sky. The section consisted of two main chapters, Grey Ecology and Continental Drift.

Law & Proximity and Grey Ecology: The main idea of which Virilio attempted to communicate to his readers was a simple analogy. Virilio opened up the chapter to characteristics of the human body and how pests such as mosquitoes can infect the human body. However, this time the scenario was focused on how humans and our over-activity and elimination of space and time are contributing to an “infection” of the earth. The pace in which we live our lives is not only good for the physical environment around us, but it is also bad for the way society can function on a daily level.

Continental Drift: Time now counts more than space in the society we live in. That’s because we as a population have used technological advancements to eliminate space and to preserve our valuable time. We save our valuable time and energy by emphasizing speed. However, speed can kill and that is where Virilio emphasized accidents.

When a city builds a train system that can get people to and from work faster, there is a high likelihood of an ugly accident that could possibly result in injuries or death.  Without cars, people would not die in car accidents. These accidents can lead to a sense of fear and the will to reform our infrastructure. If technology advances too rapidly, the infrastructure of our countries and cities will be considered obsolete. It would be so expensive to fix our infrastructure to the standards that increase everyday that it would drive our governments and private businesses broke. Therefore, I can see where Virilio is coming from: We can’t let our growth of technology outpace our own economy and infrastructure.

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