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Re: <nettime> a liberal revolution in 21st century Africa?
Newmedia on Thu, 4 Jul 2013 09:28:54 +0200 (CEST)


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Re: <nettime> a liberal revolution in 21st century Africa?


Keith:
 
> PS Mark S. Things digital do make an 
> appearance in the book, but not in the
> essay.
 
Thanks for the shout out . . . !! <g>
 
There are revolutions and there are renaissances.  My guess is that  the 
latter would be a much more beneficial prospect for Africa.
 
Revolutions -- particularly the "liberal" ones in the West of the  
17th/18th/19th centuries -- all took place within the Christian cultural frame,  
with particular emphasis on the final "chapter" of the book most favored by the 
 technology of the printing press. By looking for "heaven on earth," these  
were all deeply concerned (whether they acknowledged it or not) with  
accelerating Armageddon and the Millennium.
 
My hope is that Africa isn't caught in the same "devil's bargain" as was  
the West.
 
Fortunately for Africa, China will be more important than the West for its  
future.  China has no "Revelations."  China, in fact, is all about  
*renaissances* (with a cycle of roughly 700 years) and, since it has no interest  
in the 2nd Coming, it is not about *revolutions* (as reflected in their 
complete  retooling of Marx now underway in Beijing.)
 
Digital technologies "overturn" the environment of *electricity* (which, in 
 turn, overturned the environment of the printing press and its enforced 
slavery  to the Bible) so, for Africa, as for China and every other culture 
that draws  its strengths elsewhere, perhaps "digital" will assist in a long 
needed  renaissance of learning and prosperity.
 
Mark Stahlman
Brooklyn NY
 
 
 


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