What renders us mute is the pain of the future that we will never achieve, rather than

the nostalgia for times that will never return.  We are no longer a people, a country, a

community. Now we are a person, a human being, an individual, a citizen. Public squares no longer exist; there is no room for conflicts or agreements, each one has his or her own religion, his or her own god: oneself. We can participate in surveys, express our views over the Internet, leave comments here and there; it’s good to bloat statistics; we are the audience, and there is a desire to produce

culture using that very model.

We are the audience: we are merely consumers with no other ties, devoid of solidarity; at the end of the day, we are just what capital needs. We give our best to our work, we devote our friends, our brains, our time to it. And leisure is productive, too: we are the audience, we read newspapers, we watch videos over the Internet, we go to the cinema, we watch television. Here’s a delightful paradox: people out of work are always working. Or looking for work. We wander around, we have our roots in the satellites, while beneath there is no earth, nothing but the horror of falling into the abyss at any moment. We lack models of a

different kind.

But what are we to pin our hopes on? Right now the resignation of the State is complete, we have used public funds to pay off private debts. And when put beside

capital, the power of the public institutions is pathetic. Those in power wander around aimlessly, the coming elections their only aim. And the structures under their control also wander aimlessly (because they are under their control). And muteness has prevailed.

Whoever remains silent has the ability to speak. Have those who end up mute retained the power to speak?



Even though no death notices have appeared  anywhere, Arteleku has breathed its last; if no one has noticed, the most likely reason could be that it’s been on its deathbed for ages. Now something else will be the heart of Tabakalera, the driving force behind the project, but it won’t be Arteleku any more. However, there’s no room for nostalgia. Nothing is in vain, and something always remains. One day these spheres will be swallowed up by oblivion, but in the meantime, all those reflections made here might yet have their uses. Many good people have passed through, and many good people have contributed to the Zehar magazine.

Delving into the past could be one way of starting to build the future. And that’s what

we’ve tried to do in this issue: to bring what sat in darkness into the light. The many interesting articles were kept just sitting there gathering the dust and waiting to see the light of day, and we’ve decided to publish them again. It’s a political exercise, if you like, because the concern underpinning the choice is also political. The very concept of public is what is at stake today, and not just in the sphere of culture. What are the ways of participating like today? The very idea of a public and critical sphere is what has declined and is being constantly transformed. We wanted to offer a forum for those texts dealing with that concern, so we can get a clearer idea about what has changed since past times, and what has not changed that much.

The streets have also changed, and it goes  without saying that town squares have,

too. Today, the squares are not like the old  ones, the way of life of people has changed  significantly within a matter of a few years, we  are more inclined towards domesticity now, and very likely more domesticated, too.

We asked Gari Garaialde to take photos of the squares; they portray a history, which, despite being right there in front of our eyes every day, is seen differently in photos.

What has become of that Res publica now?



ZEHAR_68_EN_WEB.pdf — PDF document, 4978Kb
Dokumentu Akzioak