The Trouble with Ordinariness
It has been difficult to think of something to say about the London bombings. One thing that sticks in my mind is the fact that London is under constant super surveillance. What results, then, is not the elimination of terrorists acts or any violence for that matter but instead an exposure of a sort of wicked dialectic of normalcy (even mundanity) and, well, death.
The image above is supposedly of the suicide bombers. There is nothing there to indicate that they will kill themselves and others. It is that fact alone that makes it an interesting image. We can look at it and say at that moment nothing had happened and life was going on as usual.
Terrorism works on this priniciple: take that ordinariness and shatter it. The irrational act then eliminates the ordinary.
Ok, but what about the death of the Brazilian electrician? With our definition could it not be argued that he experienced (at the hand of London Metro Police - who were in plain clothes, I might add) a similar sort of terror?
The dialectic then becomes one more about the illusion of order and the fragility of life when we start believing in the irrationality instilled by fear.