We were keeping our eye on 1984. When the year came and the prophecy didn’t, thoughtful Americans sang softly in praise of themselves. The roots of liberal democracy had held. Wherever else the terror had happened, we, at least, had not been visited by Orwellian nightmares.
But we had forgotten that alongside Orwell’s dark vision, there was another - slightly older, slightly less well known, equally chilling: Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World. Contrary to common belief even among the educated, Huxley and Orwell did not prophesy the same thing. Orwell warns that we will be overcome by an externally imposed oppression. But in Huxley’s vision, no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history. As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.
What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture, preoccupied with some equivalent of the feelies, the orgy porgy, and the centrifugal bumblepuppy. As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny “failed to take into account man’s almost infinite appetite for distractions.” In 1984, Orwell added, people are controlled by inflicting pain. In Brave New World, they are controlled by inflicting pleasure. In short, Orwell feared that what we fear will ruin us. Huxley feared that what we desire will ruin us.
This book is about the possibility that Huxley, not Orwell, was right.
How do you differentiate between antemortem and postmodern injuries? For the added twist value 👀
Before we start, lets have some basic definitions.
Antemortem injuries occurs before death, it is usually indicated by signs of
healing. Perimortem injuries are those that occur at or near the time of death,
with no evidence of healing. Postmortem injuries occur after death, also with
no evidence of healing.
Differentiating between the types/timeline of injuries is
mainly studied in the field of forensic anthropology, dealing with skeletal
The healing process of injuries happens almost immediately
after it occurs. Evidence of the healing process on skeletal fractures can show
as early as after 1 week after the injury. Between week 1 and 3, the fracture edges
will remold and rounded, and by week 6 a bony callus will form. Healing rates
will of course depends on facts such as overall health and nutritional status
of the person injured. Anthropologist can use bones to basically figure out
history trauma on the body: history of abuse or accidental trauma, history of
nutrition, indication of poverty etc. Fun fact, antemortem injuries/fractures
can help with confirming identity of an unknown person through presence of
plates/pins (which might have serial numbers recorded in medial charts).
Perimortem trauma is important for reconstructing the events
that occurs near the time of death, while postmortem trauma is important to
determine if the injuries are caused to conceal some information about the
crime (or from opportunistic local wildlife feasting on free food). With perimortem
fractures, the person died before healing take place, but the fracture should
still show signs of the biomechanics of healing starting similar to antemortem
fractures. Peri- and post-mortem trauma is different from antemortem trauma
since there is no sign of healing. Bones are elastic while alive, and gets dry
and brittle after death in a process called plastic deformation. This means that
perimortem bone fractures tends to splinter, while postertem breaks shatter in
a more regular shape.
Moving away from bones and onto bruising. Bruises is a
discolouration of the skin when blood vessels/capillaries are damaged by
trauma, letting seeps/hemorrhage. Since bruises accompanies different types of
wounds, usually associated with blunt trauma, so they can provide information
on their causation and help with the reconstruction of events leading up to
death. Bruises are dated/aged differently depending on where it is on the body.
A deep bruise in the thigh muscle might not appear for a day or two, while a
bruise over a bony prominence and where tissue is loose (ie near the eyes) will
appear and swell very quickly. Postmortem injuries tend to have a yellowish
brown, kind of bloodless appearance, lacking vital reaction due to the absence
of blood flow after death.
Looking at postmortem injuries can be difficult, and trauma
on the body might still appear due to resuscitation efforts or from the way the
body is handled after death. This is what Watson can pull up online, hopefully
there is some useful info here. Happy writing!
The ecosystem is severely disrupted, the financial system is increasingly uncontrollable, and the geopolitical structure has recently begun to appear as unstable as it has always been uneven. CEOs and politicians express their ‘‘desire for change’’ at every interview and voice a heartfelt ‘‘yes we can’’ at each photo-op. Planners and architects increasingly replace their blueprints for environments with environmental ‘‘greenprints’’. And new generations of artists increasingly abandon the aesthetic precepts of deconstruction, para- taxis, and pastiche in favor of aesth-ethical notions of reconstruction, myth, and metaxis. These trends and tendencies can no longer be explained in terms of the postmodern. They express a (often guarded) hopefulness and (at times feigned) sincerity that hint at another structure of feeling, intimating another discourse. History, it seems, is moving rapidly beyond its all too hastily proclaimed end.
- Timotheus Vermeulen and Robin van den Akker, Notes on metamodernism
An alternative to ‘the syntatcially corrent but semantically meaningless post-postmodernism’.