Man is an animal suspended in webs of significance that he himself has spun...

Friday, December 13, 2013

The History of the World in 2 Minutes

It's Friday and I've got way too many ideas swirling in my brain from all the reading I've been doing.   There was Paul Collier's Exodus:  How Migration is Changing Our World,  Robert Morris' FATCA and the New Birth of American Empire, and Uncertain Demographics and Fiscal Sustainability (J. Alho, Editor).

I need time to process and the best way to do that is to do my duty at church this morning and then come back home for some heavy lifting in the garden.

But I did want to share this with you.  It was sent to me by my father in Seattle who said that he wasn't sure who created it but he thought it might have been a high school student.  No matter, it's very well done.  It reminded me that all the books and all the ideas I've gone over this week will not only be irrelevant in 50 years (if not 5) but will certainly be utterly forgotten in 500.  What we live right now, and our preoccupations which take up so much of our time and we think are so important, are really just blinks in time.  This is not a call to cast away all our efforts, but a reminder that one day we will be long gone and none of what we are doing, thinking, writing today will matter one whit.   I find that rather soothing.  Sure takes the pressure off, doesn't it?  Enjoy the film and your Friday.



6 comments:

Ellen said...

My immediate reaction is that the clip shows war and strife in the most recent period. So, I guess that means, that in the long run, they will be forgotten, as have been past wars, the black plague. In the end, we only remember the good stuff.

Victoria FERAUGE said...

Good point, ellen, and that's weird because Pinker says we are getting less violent as a species, not more.

Gilbert said...

Wonderful. Thank you! Slightly Western- and US-centric towards the end, but that is excusable certainly, after all it's made in US and in part about the US. It's moving, beautiful, and, yes, it puts us all in perspective. By the way, I think Pinker's thesis is fragile. Peace, relative peace, depends on underlying equilibria - the balance of power or dominance of one power - and on prosperity or the hope of prosperity. Those two conditions are crumbling.

Victoria FERAUGE said...

Glad you enjoyed it, Gilbert. I see what you mean about Pinker's thesis. I have a hard time with it sometimes because I so desperately want it to be true....

Anonymous said...

Pretty cool, but, of course, if it was true to the time frame of "the World" any human activity would take up maybe less than a second of the brief video.

Victoria FERAUGE said...

Yes, you're right. :-)