Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All
Monday, January 31, 2011
Rising Up From Point Zero
I have to say the voice of the heroic Nawal al-Sadawy this morning on Democracy Now! probably moved me more than anything I'd heard so far, strange to tell. I'm still disgruntled at what seems to me a pornographic touristic quality in the enjoyment I see across much of the online commentary about Egypt. Also, I'm still enormously worried about what seem to me lethal confusions of spontaneism with democracy and also too many facile assumptions about Facebook-Revolutionaries and other figures of techno-abundance presumably in play (both spontaneism and techno-abundance are profoundly congenial to neoliberal developmentalist narratives -- and I fear all too likely to facilitate and rationalize authoritarian recapture of the energies of the uprising -- even as, just such neoliberal policies and Washington Consensus assumptions no less than all those tear gas canisters, fighter jets, and tanks are among the key American imports contributing indispensably to the conditions against which Egypt is rising up). But, all that aside, hearing Nawal al-Sadawy's happiness and conviction on the streets of Cairo (I've been teaching her since I discovered her work, as a real latecomer let me add, back in 1995), I'll admit I shed a few tears of joy in spite of myself.