Saturday, September 10, 2011

Death and Media

Don't normally recycle old posts, but in light of the 9/11 anniversary observation going on in the media, this one seemed worth resurrecting:

FRIDAY, APRIL 08, 2005

eternal life will not be televised

papolatrie - the help of ritual - bigness, inflation, costumes, dirge, convenient fixity of death.

Probably nothing more and less like news than death. It's factoidal, verifiable, and opens media elan to savor a perfectly controlled routine. It's control over the news, not the news, that we want. Not news, but a sort of mechanized Big Gulp O' the Thrill and the Chill of Memento Mori, the frisson of horror slowed to images of a gelid crawl of thousands of the assembled, moving in medievalesque slo-mo, the hyperbolic elongation of the photo-op.

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