The Media does not know what democracy is. Indeed our societies have, for the most part, forgotten the meaning of democracy. Democracy is not a state form. Democracy is a mode of foundationless existential living. As such it needs the kind of attention which our self-satisfied media institutions, riven with complacent journalistic practices and corrupted by institutional privilege, are incapable of. We need to sweep away The Media to allow existential democracy to manifest itself. This will also entail the destruction of key aspects of the academic institution of Media and Cultural Studies, which has evidently failed to radically change the nature of media institutions and practices which was its avowed aim. It has failed because of the epistemological and ontological assumptions that underpin it and which were ultimately drawn from the failed project of structuralism. The images we create arise from chaos. Images of value are in Castoriadis’ expression ‘windows upon the chaos’. The Media Against Democracy is engaged in rethinking the possibilities for aesthetic engagement with this chaos, proposing an existential-anarchic critique of media. Through our images and sounds we need to learn to understand ontological chaos, only then can we know that whatever we create, when we try to explain to each other how we should live, has no authority other than what we can accord it.
Thomas Field works at Stockton College where he lectures on Philosophy and Media Studies and lives in Middlesbrough in the North East of England.