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Showing posts from March 13, 2011

(edited) Underground 2: the man without a character

Two questions help us classify undergrounds: who lives in it? And where is it? At first glance, the latter question seems to pick at a mere tautology. The underground should surely be under the ground. This, however, is not the case: undergrounds are not simply underground, but are portable, made out of a habitat, a milieu, a political choice, a crime. How these things become underground depends on the metaphoric filter that connects a symbolically charged place with the modern. Or even pre-modern. There is, for instance, an underground in the brain in as much as a memory is perceived as hidden – it sinks into a ‘hole’ in the brain. When Augustine evokes memory in the Confessions, he evokes the underground: “All these things, each one of which came into memory in its own particular way, are stored up separately and under the general categories of understanding. For example, light and all colors and forms of bodies came in through the eyes; sounds of all kinds by the ears; all smells