China as a mirror of future


La musique est prophétique : ses pratiques et son organisation économiques sont en avance sur le reste de la société car elles explorent, beaucoup plus vite que le peut la réalité matérielle, l’ensemble des possibles selon un code donné. La musique donne à entendre ce monde nouveau qui se révélera peu à peu sous nos yeux.

Jacques Attali, Bruits, 1977

Far from knowing things about Attali, yet I still remember the shock when I first encountered the paragraph from his book more than a decade ago.

While he recognizes its economic organization, he also stresses that its immateriality enables it to explore all the possibilities much faster than material reality.

All too many leaps in metaphor
so better not stay close too long
lest you may fall victim of a chimera,
fascinating amalgam of Marxism and mysticism

However, it somehow confirmed the feeling that I’ve had all along as I grow up and see what’s happening in Korea: its fast capitalist development will show the future of capitalism which the West can’t manifest due to its fossilized social dynamics.

It’s the lack of historical context which gave birth to capitalism. It’s the lack of modernity the capitalism had brought to the West.

The capitalist blood transfused into a body devoid of immunity which maintained the humane aspect of western capitalism. I thought dark enlightenment thinkers dream would be fulfilled in Korea.

I hadn’t been taking attention on China, obviously.

This video of a Chinese ultra-fast fashion model shows a glimpse of what kind of terra incognita China can reveal to the humanity.

Everything is just so fast that the model had to suck it up, in the name of being professional, when she has to change her all too many clothes on a street in broad daylight without any kind of privacy.

Yet more startling, even at the level of being disturbing to me, is her calmness when she contemplates her fate as a commodity rapidly decreasing in its value, soon to be replaced by younger, better-looking and even cheaper models.

Breaking up the chain doesn’t seem to be an option. She just accepts her fate and resolves to carry on.

We will soon witness much more when China faces a hard landing in economy.

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