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Session 14: Capitalism’s Utopia & Dystopia

The finale of our Globinar returns to the epidemic/pandemic threat and two drivers of capitalism and its civilization that have generated dystopian/utopian perspectives.

Published onFeb 04, 2021
Session 14: Capitalism’s Utopia & Dystopia


First, the imperative of exploration has been propelled to unforeseen forms of behavioural control and regulation by the algorithmic combination of data and the exertion of artificial intelligence facilitating anticipatory government, predictive policing, social scoring, and smart orders. Second, capitalism’s extractive dynamic and the imperative of relentless growth have from the very beginning colonized “nature” and  incurred ever new ecological imbalances and crises. Deforestation, land grab for industrial production, agroindustry, strip mining, and urban sprawl have invaded fauna’s and flora’s habitat. The infinite variety of viruses and bacilli, amoeba and bacteria delivered by animal hosts, like fleas, flies, rats, bats, lice, civet cats and even dromedaries, invariably indicate that civilization has recklessly crossed a border. COVID-19 brought capitalism to a grinding halt, albeit temporarily, and called into question law’s equipment to cope with a pandemic. The disease should be taken as a warning and a metaphor that something is deeply wrong with capitalism and should be used as an occasion to rethink our relationship to nature.


  • Dorothy H. Crawford, Deadly Companions, 2007, pp. 184-193, 204-210

Further readings:

  • William McNeill, Plagues and Peoples 1976, pp. 1-13, 176-207


  • Klaus Günther, Smart Orders

Please access the Globinar Cloud here (password: dystopia).



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