Corona Care Package #52 | The Matrix Economy


Tuesday’s post: The Matrix Economy
Monday’s post: What You Can Do To Fight Racism

Tuesday 9 June | The Matrix Economy

Writing for RT, the communist philosopher Slavoj Žižek takes a stab at the fully digitized lifestyle that corona quarantine has accelerated. Especially in New York, where governor Cuomo has invited Google’s former CEO Eric Schmidt and Microsoft founder Bill Gates to “re-imagine” education, infrastructure, and more. Žižek sees this as a big step towards a Matrix like reality, where everything is mediated not by people, but by screens and machines.

Can you picture it? A society without touch?

We have all the infrastructure in place. The privileged among us can work/study from home; get groceries, meals, and any consumer items delivered to our doorstep; get our news, friends, and entertainment online. We can be self sufficient with potable water, sewage, waste disposal, solar panels, and so on. We’re entering a reality where, if you’re wealthy enough, you never have to leave home.

Žižek asks us two important questions. If our lives are lived almost exclusively online, should the networks that facilitate that life be in the hands of private companies? Or should they be in the hands of the public? And secondly, while we sit at home sipping our delivery Mojito, what happens to the underprivileged servicing all the needs of the Matrix lifestyle? How much longer will we treat care professionals and supermarket clerks as heroes before they go back to being invisible?

Studium Generale created a Corona Care Package to make #StayingIn as pleasant as possible. In the following weeks we will share videos, blogs, articles and podcasts within four focus areas: Mental Health, The World After Corona, Arts & Culture and other online events.