Isolated. Limited. Step away. Inmates and forced. Slowed. Damaged. Worried and frightened.
It is true, in these days of sanitary measures we happen to feel this way. We should try to change the point of view from which to look at things to understand if how we read and warn them depends on us or on the things themselves. Here, then, are some reversals of view at the time of Covid-19.
Isolated. The intelligent person understands that they must prepare defenses that perhaps he will never use, but which he cannot renounce, because nobody is free from the risk of encountering circumstances that put him in condition to live in solitude.
Limited. Maybe this is the right occasion for someone to understand that we have social problems and that real sociality is not “only” the virtual one, as it seemed in the subway, at the restaurant, on the street, at home, always with the head bent on one smartphone. We need to resume the ability to be together physically at least in certain places and at certain times, and, in this time of ‘no hugs, no kisses, no handshakes’, perhaps we can also recover the sense of the body, given that it is the body to be touched and limited.
Step away. Here we are that today there are no more borders between human beings and that therefore we must learn to deal with the ‘proximity’ of others. All. They are bearers of different thoughts, religions, customs, and even diseases.
Inmates and forced. Perhaps we discover that we are feeling too well, that we do not know how to make sacrifices and that we consider everything coercive of our freedom, of our rights. Sooner or later, however, we will have to define what sets us free. If being free means doing what we like, well, maybe it’s not a great freedom. I think this has a lot to do with the sense of ‘relative’ that we have lost, perhaps because we no longer have the tools to understand what a ‘relationship’ is.
Slowed. #noinoncifermiamo. Quite right. But if the aim of human existence is an economy of ever greater profit, even in this case it does not seem to me to be a great end. On the contrary, it seems to me a ‘limited’ end (this time really) in time and space.
Damaged. It is true that not being able to be together has also led to the closure or quota of theaters, places of culture, museums, cinemas, discos, etc. But to say that this is for us to send the entire cultural sector into crisis means two things: the first that over the years we have insisted too hard on the idea that theaters, museums, etc. should be managed only as cultural enterprises and tourist attractions; the second that by culture we mean something that increasingly resembles (or even identifies itself) with an industry of entertainment, leisure, and tourism. Again, the stop we are experiencing can become an opportunity to think about whether it is not worth reviewing our parameters. Maybe starting from a reflection on the role of theaters and museums in a city and on the fact that they can be generators of thought, originality, and, in particular, community relations only when they are and remain ‘res publica’, out of market constraints. In the meantime, let’s buy some books and some new films. We all need it.
Worried and frightened. I am convinced that thinking exclusively about this land makes us terrified of anything that endangers our well-being and our life. It is as if we are bent over ourselves and continually look at our feet which are precisely on the ground. Try it. From that position, you feel a devastating sense of loneliness that goes hand in hand with an exorbitant fragility.