Who—in this shamelessly visual age—would bother to read an analysis of the Muslim world’s modern history when ISIS is swamping social media with ghastly short videos whose impact on viewers is often irrevocable? What can my apologetic writings change if the Pandora’s Box of fear has been opened and is indiscriminately spreading poison?
One week after the bombings in Boston and I still feel the urge to write about this so much.
Some responses, hastily and inconsiderately set down.
An explosion is frightening not only because it threatens me. An explosion is frightening because it's ontologically uncanny. This uncanniness underlies the physical threat. What uncanniness? Quite simply, an object that just functions in “my world”—a plane, a skyscraper—suddenly comes to life in a very different way. My world wavers for a moment—even collapses.