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<nettime> MASSE MENSCH GERMANY: FROM LOVE PARADE TO LOVE STAMPEDE or how
Tjebbe van Tijen on Tue, 27 Jul 2010 13:47:19 +0200 (CEST)


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<nettime> MASSE MENSCH GERMANY: FROM LOVE PARADE TO LOVE STAMPEDE or how love was lost in a crowd



MASSE MENSCH GERMANY: FROM LOVE PARADE TO LOVE STAMPEDE or how love was lost in a crowd

July 24, 2010 by Tjebbe van Tijen

This is just the text version; the illustrated and linked version can be found at

http://limpingmessenger.wordpress.com/2010/07/24/masse-mensch-germany-from-love-parade-to-love-stampede-or-how-love-was-lost-in-the-crowd/


FROM LOVE PARADE TO LOVE STAMPEDE 15 death (number saturday evening late) in a traffic tunnel in Duisburg/Germany – such news does not come as a surprise – such things were bound to happen with the massified need of people to congregate physically as an answer to the paradox of a virtual and electronic interconnected world and personal feelings of  isolation. With the new media there seems to be no bounds when it comes to the exploitation of loneliness. The logistic management of human bodies for crowds beyond one hundred thousand people is a science still in its infancy, which apparently lays outside the limited and eager scope of  mass event entrepreneurs and the civil authorities that support their enterprise.

[Picture: This still image is from a 4-D interactive model of crowd evacuation dynamics in a dense urban setting, used to explore individual and collective behavior under emergency scenarios]


There is a price to sheer unlimited mobility and connectivity amplified by the need and greed that make people wanting to meet in such numbers.


[Still from Raw Video: 15 Killed in Mass Panic in Germany on YouTube... ]


I have to think back at the German playwright Ernst Toller and his world famous theatre drama from 1920: “Masse Mensch” which warns against faceless massification… Let me cite the chorus”

THE MASSES:

We, eternally wedged into

Caverns of towering houses,

We, abandoned to mechanisms of mocking systems,

We, faceless in the night of tears,

We eternally severed from our mothers,

>From the depths of the factories we call!

When will we live in love?

When will we work our will?

When will we be saved?”


[Advertisement of today... this web site still had a link to buy a ticket for 29 Euro...]

Just selected a fragment from one of my 2008 scroll projects, “Dionysia & other Pleasure Parades”, as a counter point image. One sees the ‘Siegesäule’ in Berlin towering over the masses- a few years ago – masses that by commercialism have been redirected  to their tunnel of death in Duisburg: from Parade to Stampede…

[detail Love Parade Berlin...]

“When will we live in love?” is the question from 1920 by Toller, posed – once again – 90 years later. I am not afraid to go against the fashionable current of the quest for ever and ever bigger,  more loud and more grandiose events… at a certain scale a party becomes a war and a parade will become a death march. Let’s run away  from the the crowd barriers and throw a party within the horizons of our limited means of human communication, affection and pleasure, to be lovable with our own and other faces recognisable once again.







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