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 5: Polar Inertia
Stop the earth: I'm getting off.
Is there a privileged here? Yes, absolute kinaesthetic zero: the zero of energy, wrote Husserl in notes composed in the thirties.
Kinaesthetic space is thus a system of possible places as stopping point, as beginning and end of calm.
This primary world which is constituted in stationary kinaesthetic activity, in the inaction of ‘walking kinaesthetics’, is a world which is firmly oriented about my physical animate organism (or the null-point constituted in it). If walking begins, all worldly things therefore continue to appear to me to be oriented about my phenomenally stationary, resting organism. That is, they are oriented with respect to here and there, left and right, etc., whereby a firm zero of orientation persists, so to ...