devaluing the time of the vulnerable, part 3

‘Ours is an age of onrushing turbo-capitalism, wherein the present feels

more abbreviated than it used to—at least for the world’s privileged classes

who live surrounded by technological time-savers that often compound

the sensation of not having enough time. Consequently, one of the most

pressing challenges of our age is how to adjust our rapidly eroding attention

spans to the slow erosions of environmental justice. If, under neoliberalism,

the gulf between enclaved rich and outcast poor has become ever more pronounced,

ours is also an era of enclaved time wherein for many speed has

become a self-justifying, propulsive ethic that renders “uneventful” violence

(to those who live remote from its attritional lethality) a weak claimant on

our time. The attosecond pace of our age, with its restless technologies of

infinite promise and infinite disappointment, prompts us to keep flicking

and clicking distractedly in an insatiable—and often insensate—quest for

quicker sensation.’

extract from The Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor by Rob Nixon