Exhibiting Historical Art: Out of the Vault: Stories of People and Things

The Louis XIV Deterrent; Conrad Atkinson

The Louis XIV Deterrent
Conrad Atkinson
     1940 - 

"There are two hinges on which the history of the world will develop over the next two decades; firstly the relationship between the developed world and third world and secondly the nuclear arms race and the military industrial complex.  This piece is about both of these.  It was written partly in Washington and partly in London during the very earliest days of the Reagan Administration; on the threshold of a most crucial decade and a couple of days after the biggest missile alert in 35 years.
The mystifying forces of the great religions are once again waiting in the wings of history, preparing their cosmetic solutions; intent on reclaiming the territory they lost after the Age of Reason.  The tribalisation of humanity threatens to reduce the possibility of forming a rational understanding of our material relationship to nature and to other human beings.  Democracy is being threatened in its development by rituals devised around such concepts as 'the right to bear arms,' 'monetarism.'  Our status is changing from M.A.D. (mutual assured destruction) to a 'Theatre' nuclear war in Europe.
The pentagon and the Kremlin have written scripts - they can hardly wait for the casting and the production.  This track 'The Louis XIV Deterrent' is a piece of grit in that massive machine - if there are enough pieces of grit the machine may well seize up."

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