Progress, Again?

Posted on July 11, 2020

Progress, Again?


The Protestants smashed sculptures and chopped paintings. Their churches had to be sober and empty spaces for praying individuals, each weaving prayers with business plans into a seamless web. While they prayed, Cromwell was selling millions of the Irish as white slaves. The Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, French and British accumulated capital and dreamt about black slaves and green futures.


Everything clicked. Slaves were invented, domestic poor discovered (or the other way round). Churches became sources of stones and paved roads for revolutionary armies. Everybody had a right to be a famer in the morning, an industrial engineer at noon and a literary critic in the evening.


Sculptures go down again, churches disappear in flames or are redesigned as upscale appartments. Paintings are not chopped, but smashing boutique windows in city centers and car windows in the suburbs becomes a popular sport. Progress is redesigned. Everybody can be a man in the morning, a woman at noon and a virtual transvestite online at all times.


Haarlem, July 11th, 2020