Athar Jaber

Paul Virilio - The Administration of Fear

PAUL VIRILIO: The Administration of Fear (2010)

1. Terror is the realization of the law of movement – Hannah Arendt

Speed is relativity and relativity is politics.
Ancient societies’ chrono-politics (calendar, seasons, civil or religious holidays, rhythm of farmers and craftsmen etc.).
There is now a lack of a political economy of speed. The administration of time and tempo and rhythm.
Dromology is a musicology, it is a question of rhythm, its variety and diversity.
Our society is arrhythmic. It knows only one rhythm: constant acceleration. Until the crash and systemic failure.


Ecological bomb: realization of major biblical myths in 21st century.
Babel = 9/11
Flood = Tsunami (2004) and Katrina (2005)
Exodus = rise of seas

Informational bomb: instantaneous communication and transmission of information.
Fear can thus be established as a global environment because the synchronization of emotion happens on a global scale. Transition from democracy of opinion to a democracy of emotion.

The loss of reality is the result of progress.
The increase in speed reduces the field of vision. We look ahead in anticipation and lose our lateral vision. Tunnel vision.
Importance of lateral vision. Animal’s eyes are situated on the sides to anticipate surprise, which never comes head-on. Today, there is a loss of the visual field and of the anticipation of what really surrounds us.


Not against new technologies; only against promoting them. 

2. Administrating Fear: Towards civil dissuasion

Administrating fear: Towards civil dissuasion

“The power of an ideology is not only measured by the answers it can provide but by the questions it can suppress.” Gunther Anders.
In the propaganda of progress, the question of speeds and its (unsanctioned) violence has been suppressed.


The spatiotemporal compression has fused the sanitary ideology of Great Health and the security ideology of Lebensraum. Together they lead to biopolitics and meteorological politics.
The fusion of issues of security and health created an environment of fear.

Suicide as a work accident.
As a consequence, the action of Kamikaze becomes official.
Individual resistance to the state of technological occupation would take the form of sacrifice and nihilist philofolly.


Mohammet Atta went to pilot school. His weapons was his work equipment combined with his sacrificed body.

He was also an architect and wrote about the twin Towers in his MA thesis.


Civil dissuasion is a state of fear that allows the suspension of controversial social situations.

A philosophical intelligence of the state of the world needs to be developed to regain control over the major social choices that we have to make. Where is being-in-the-world in the era where speed is at the limit?
We need to rediscover a depth of field, and intelligence of the state of the world. Its lack explains the lifelessness of current political proposals.


After Impressionism we haven’t gone beyond Expressionism. Neo-Expressionism continued into an academicism of disgust. Fear produced and art that outlasts itself, disconnected from the impulses that created it. Art that produced physical or mental discomfort.

The society of fear brought its own art that replaced seduction with repulsion.
A simulated reality will change and end up substituting itself for itself to become a different reality. It will integrate its simulation. We end up having causal chains of successive realities. 
Beside its enclosed environment of ghetto’s, fear created a culture of repulsion. It relates to racism and the rejection of the other: there is always a reason to push out, to expulse the other.


Raves are like political manifestos on the uneasiness of being together. Their significance comes from expressing the uneasiness of being together of mass individualism.

Ubiquity and immediacy are nothing more than immobilism. The contemporary sedentary is someone who feels at home anywhere, and the nomad is someone who does not feel at home anywhere, someone who is excluded, ostracized.


Imprisonment is ahead. Ecological panic is caused by mass claustrophobia, by the fear that the planet cannot guarantee our development.
Movement, escape, exodus become permanent phenomena Move constantly or flee definitely.

Constantly move or inversely barricade yourself at home in the hope of preserving your space, not searching for a living space but preserving it.



If you wish to stay informed about Athar Jaber’s Artistic Activities please subscribe to the Newsletter by filling in the form below.

By submitting this form you agree to receive news, exhibition dates, and other updates from Athar Jaber.
By submitting this form, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and our Privacy Policy