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Borge Paradox

02/08/2014 - 02/08/2015 (tz: Europe/Amsterdam)

Becoming deontological -- a politics of deontologizing art / an art of deontologizing politics

losing_human_form
losing_human_form

At one point in the mid-1980s, Sandinista leader Tomas Borge quipped in reference to some local grievance that “it may be true even though Ronald Reagan says it’s true.” It took his interlocutors a moment to get their heads around such a counterintuitive statement — after all, the US President so systematically distorted information that his assertions seemed to provide a pretty reliable benchmark regarding disinformation. Borge’s comment was less about obdurate “facts” than about how antagonistic outlooks may inadvertently tease hidden assumptions to light, compelling us to reappraise what no longer seems worth thinking about — if only we pay attention. The logic behind the “Borge paradox” is of enduring validity, particularly for untangling and reweaving the narratives of that conflicted decade; more contemporaneously, it is highly useful in helping us to understand — rather than to merely acc​ept — the stance of what is to date the most ambitious enquiry into the articulations between art and the political in 1980s Latin America. Losing Human Form is based not on a chronological but rather a political understanding of the eighties, which it sees as beginning prematurely in 1973 with the overthrow of Salvador Allende’s Popular Front in Chile and only coming to an end with the emergence of Zapatismo in 1995. Losing Human Form in its current configuration doesn’t actually examine the Sandinista experience — or that of the FMLN in neighbouring El Salvador, though the potential is definitely there — but these may well be focal points for future instantiations of this ongoing, collective research project, undertaken by the Red Conceptualismos del Sur (RCdS).