Perhaps it is the absence of visible (chain or cuff) constraint in the present era of the western civilization that makes it even harder to narrate to the individual how our daily engagements are illusions of assumes freedom we believe we possess over our own thought and action. Just as words have fallen prey to politics, there is no immunity to the state of human freedom which with the constant decay of words has been limited to the physical ability of an individual to alternate between spaces.
In our modern society, competition has rendered our freedom more vulnerable with the intense desire for speed and acceptance. It is not in my path to determine for the whole world, but it is essential as Baldwin said that the artist must cultivate that state in which the world tries to avoid solitude which should not be taken for being conservative. I will relate to Baldwin’s concept of solitude here as the space to reflect on the individual and further aggregate the process of engaging with the universality of human society and its effect on the self. The drive of the society we find ourselves today is the need to surpass the other; this condition automatically weans the individual off self-assessment and acceptance vital element of the freedom of the individual.
African colonies were given political independence, but the position of their economical independence remains uncertain till the present day, as the economy of most African countries has relegated to passive consuming of products which mostly comes from outside the continent. It is essential that setting a black slave freed in the Antarctic is a good thing, but such slaves should be given a warm coat, boots, and the essential needs to survive. After the abolishment of slavery in America, the reality of blacks is far from the aforementioned conditions.
Today, the freedoms of humanity witness an even more subtle yet crucial challenge and this is posed by advancement in technology, Artificial Intelligence, and Algorithms. Perhaps it is essential that the individual question improvement in this sector and what has aided this success. Global-scale data collection has remained a constant feature of the internet and Google, Facebook, and Twitter have access to the currency of the next era of our civilization.
Analytics have become more individual-oriented hence suggesting news, people, events, adverts, books and places which we have a conscious or unconscious interest in. These are facilitated by the data collection which occurs on a daily bases even without engaging the internet. Perhaps, I should invite you to visit www.myactivity.google.com if you have a Gmail, this page will show you your engagement from phone calls, to text messaging, internet search et.al did you give Google permission to keep this information even when you delete your browser history and cached? What is Google doing with this data?
After the 2015 general election in Nigeria, Cambridge analytical in a video on YouTube named Nigeria, the US, and China as a country in which they have manipulated internet users in favor of a political contestant or economy. Artificial intelligence such as Auto-Drive cars are feeding on the data humans have online or those that have saved on their gadgets. Artificial Intelligence and Algorithms can go to the length of using phone cameras to access environmental information without the consent of the phone owner. These and more are facing the decay of our freedom is protruding themselves.
I have found it not perfect enough to render the discussion of the decaying state of our freedom with text (poetry or prose) and I have no full grasp of how to explain it. I, however, believe the exploration of the illusion of freedom which is CHAOS through ensemble forms of art might do more justice to this issue. I invite each and everyone to come to the lab and we can prepare an experimental section of the illusion of freedom at Misty Avenue on July 12.