Examining how the `here and now' of space, territory, the body, are being redefined by new technologies and how this undoes simplistic versions of the globalization thesis, Paul Virilio demonstrates how technology has made inertia the defining condition of modernity. An instantaneous present has replaced space and the sovereignty of territory; everything happens without the need to go anywhere. This book will be a key reference for students and scholars of the latest thinking in social theory.
Chapter 2: The Last Vehicle
The Last Vehicle
Tomorrow, to learn space will be as useful as learning to drive a car.
In Tokyo you can see a new swimming-pool with a strong-current area where swimmers remain stationary. A brisk stretch of water prevents you from advancing, so that you have to exert the power of movement to remain where you are. In the manner of a home trainer or a moving walkway used in the wrong direction, the dynamic waters have no other purpose than to get competitive swimmers to fight the energy crossing space to meet them, energy which takes on the dimensions of the Olympic pool, as the rollers of a home trainer replace the velodrome.
Whoever exercises here, then, becomes less a moving body ...