Our friend’s friend whose name we can’t remember right now (it’ll come back to us) told us about a regime crumbling down. We didn’t trust them – we went out on the street and found it empty, dusty and blank. That desertification couldn’t be real, but it couldn’t have just been our imaginations either. We log into our Twitter account and the hashtag #Anticristos/Antichrist has been taken over... it manifests in Inspirational Quotes, Conspiracy Theories, Self-Help Tutorials, Spells, Science Fiction and Climate Change Predictions, Computer-generated Augmentations of Reality, Cryptocurrency Doctrines and CounterTales we then catch ourselves telling ourselves before going to sleep: WE BELIEVE IN... Yes, what exactly? In Fredric Jameson’s famous words: “It has become easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism”. We are still believing in it, right?
Suddenly we felt possessed; the “Antichrists/Anticristos” – revealers of mechanisms of hyperstition – pass their news from mouth to mouth, transit between screens, weave virtual and material cosmologies, blur epistemologies and beliefs, and while swapping roles between reasoners and conspirators complotting against regimes, we find ourselves in the labyrinth of information. Nonetheless, we don’t feel that the labyrinth’s inhabitants chase them or send them to the pillory this time – they don’t carry the end of the world on their apocalyptic shoulders, but announce the subversion of an order.
Faith, Facts and Fake lie close together in these assemblages of discourses and dispositives which we call ‘reality’. Fairy tales, legends, anecdotes and gossip are parts of how humans make – and have always made – sense of the world; how they make and fake history. In times of heightened ‘crisis’, we turn to conspiracies because they can be reassuring. Ignorance and populist blame connect people in speculative communities, which largely operate in the realm of online platforms, games and spiritual quests. Instead of merely dismissing this fertile ground, a conspiratorial imagination can also be a soil for counter- narratives and finding reassurance in reality and dreams. Anticristos unravels an understanding of news, experiences, and untested communication. As this issue shows: we can learn from conspiracy theories and subvert their mechanisms with greater accountability and care.
With the contributions from A.T. Kingsmith, Agnieszka Wołk-Łaniewska, Andrea Alejandro Freire & Andrea Crespo Granda, Aris Komporozos-Athanasiou, Aslı Özdoyuran, CASE, Carla Garlaschi, Caroline Busta, Co-Re, Dalia Maini, Franco Bifo Berardi, Frankfurter Hauptschule, Gabriela Valarezo, Harry Isra Muhammad, Heiko Pfreundt, Jerry Gogosian, Jessica Zambrano Alvarado, John Malpede, Joseph Lubitz, Joshua Citarella, Juliette Lizotte, Kara Walker, Louise Stewart, Maike O ́Reilly & Jeronimo Voss, Maja Ciric, Margarita Pita, Martín Nitram & Cora Marin, María Inés Plaza Lazo, Matylda Krzykowski, Max Haiven, Melanie Bühler, Mohamed Amjahid, Nuno Cassola, Pablo Bronstein, Pari Ansari, Paz Ponce Pérez-Bustamante, Princess Prada, Progressive International, Sandra Mujinga, Simon Denny & Kunstverein Hamburg, Stefan Enchelmaier, The Society of the Matriarchal World Domination, Verena Lueken, Vicente Gaibor, Wu Ming 1, plot twist, 飞飞
Reflektor Monde gUG (haftungsbeschränkt),
Lynarstrasse 38, 13353 Berlin.
Publishers/Editors: Alina Kolar, María Inés Plaza Lazo, Pauł Sochacki
Verantwortliche i. S. v. § 55 Abs. 2 RStV
Managing Editor: Dalia Maini
Extrablatt / Associate Editor: Max Haiven, with Solange Manche (assistance)
Design: Thomas Spallek, Laura Catania and Giorgia Bellotti (assistance)
Lektorat & Übersetzung: Nadia Crocker, Anne Waak, Farangees Wessal, Alek Grzybek
Druck: Druckzentrum Osnabrück GmbH & Co. KG, Osnabrück, DE
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