(apologies for long excerpts: entire text can be found here)
.. an attempt to render the air breathable again is contained in the following farce suggested by P. Sloterdijk:
This excerpt comes from the introduction B.Latour has published so far for the catalogue of Making Things Public (further refered to as MTP) an experiment on democrcy through the adaption of the technical term of ‘object-oriented’:
If not missunderstanding this project (MTP) can be looked at as an experimental attempt to change conceptions of science as defining our grasps of facts, thus wrongly achieved objectivity. In this profound sense and the impact scientific understanding nowadays has it logically influences perception of cultural, political, .. in any aspects. It concerns the presentations created as representations coming into crisis …
In this attempt of MTP – as object-oriented conception – to find a new approach in ‘presenting the representation technology of parlimentary life’ there is no purpose to ridicule the European way, but it reaches out to undertake the effort to produce ‘voices and connections among people’.
If you read the UNESCO literature, it seems that the whole world aspires to become one under the aegis of democracy, transparent representation, and the rule of law. But what if every time this inflatable parliament was being dropped in, many other voices were raised: “No Politics Please!”, “No representation!”, “Not with you”, “No democracy, thanks”, “Would you please stay as far away as possible”, “Leave us alone”, “I’d rather not”, “I prefer my king?”. [I.Stengers] What if the disagreements were not the sort of issues that divide people in the normal state of things, but were bearing instead on the very way to assemble at all? What if we had to imagine not an assembly of assemblies, not even an assembly of ways of assembling, but an assembly of ways of dissembling? Would not that be a call for disassembling instead?
And yet this is just what happens when you begin to listen to other voices. Not because they are exotic, far fetched, archaic, irrational, but because they too claim that making things public might be a much more protracted affair than entering into the realm of politics – even widely enlarged. Under the thin veneer of “democracy for all” will soon appear another crisis of representation, one much wider and deeper because it will strike at the heart of what it is to represent at all.
I would like to link at this point to the recent post on PASSION (and belonging) on purselipsquarejaw.org, as it touches the same subject.