“For someone who has spent years immersed in narratives of collapse – believing that massive systemic change is inevitable, even desirable – I’m slightly embarrassed to discover how dismaying collapse really is. And this isn’t even proper collapse yet; more of a swift contraction. The internet is suddenly full of people knowing what to think (the end of globalisation, the vindication of socialists, the vindication of xenophobes, the start of the next great depression) and people knowing what to give (free online lessons, book recommendations, communal singing from balconies). In amongst the turning-inwards people are turning outwards.”

From: Burying a Robin – Dark Mountain

“The end of the world has never been quite so simple a mythos for women, likely because most of us know that when social structures crack and shatter, what happens isn’t an instant reversion to muscular state-of-naturism. What happens is that women and carers of all genders quietly exhaust themselves filling in the gaps, trying to save as many people as possible from physical and mental collapse. The people on the frontline are not fighters. They are healers and carers.”

From: This Is Not the Apocalypse You Were Looking For

“prediction is probably most valuable to us when we are not aware we are doing it. The more conscious we are that we are making predictions, the more complicated acting on them may be. This is trivially but consequentially true whenever there is a separation of responsibilities between (a) the agent(s) generating the prediction, (b) the agent(s) responsible for choosing to act on the prediction or ignore it, (c) the agent(s) responsible for deciding how to act and (d) the agent(s) responsible for implementing the desired action responding to the prediction.”

From: The Predictioneer’s Predicament

“In conclusion, it is rather striking that most criticisms of the prediction obsession focus on the methodological grounds for prediction. Critics doubt whether efficient prediction of complex systems is possible and insult predictioneers as would-be oracles. This may or may not be a legitimate criticism, but it takes for granted the singular importance of predictions in and of themselves. Religious texts and folk parables are full of prophets that accurately foresaw the future but found themselves cursed rather than blessed by their foresight. I would not necessarily go as far as to say that predictioneers are cursed. But I am not necessarily sure they are blessed either.”

From: The Predictioneer’s Predicament

“I let go the self-imposed pressure to create spectacular images. I mean, I let that pressure go probably a decade ago, but I still felt the pressure to “explain” my unspectacular images. I think this is one of the ways social media has rotted our brains: everything moves at a faster velocity now, everything is swiftly judged by its number of likes.”

From: Fernweh: An Interview with Teju Cole