Alexandre Laumonier keeps a sharp eye on the algorithms ruling over globalized finance, and maps the way their orders consume space, in the game known as “high-frequency trading” (HFT). The stakes are high: microseconds are literally worth fortunes. Information flows at the speed of light, and those who manage to make it travel on the shortest path between markets are poised to make millions. It is no coincidence, as Alexandre writes in this radical geography essay, if that path precisely crosses, in Calais, the refugees’ paths. Indeed, the only difference between the financial networks and the migrants’ trajectories is speed.
What do people make of places? The question is as old as people and places themselves, as old as human attachments to portions of the earth. As old, perhaps, as the idea of home, of “our territory” as opposed to “their territory,” of entire regions and local landscapes where groups of men and women have invested themselves. [...] In this convulsive age of uprooted populations and extensive diasporas, holding onto places and sensing fully the goodness contained therein has become increasingly difficult, and in years to come, I expect, it may everywhere be regarded as a privilege and a gift.
Keith Basso, Wisdom sits in places, 1982
I am not a fan of zombies, but in cases of insomnia TV series are a good way to relax. The first episode of The Walking Dead, season 6, did not disappoint (for those who do not know The Walking Dead, this is the story of human survivors who try to stay alive in a world full of walkers who look like zombies). In this episode the human “refugees” found out about a camp of zombies locked in an old stone quarry.
There was a risk the zombies could escape from the quarry and invade the relocation camp where the heroes have been “living” since season 5, so the human refugees decided to release the zombies by creating a long path (with, sometimes, fences) where they could guide the walkers. The idea (that turned bad — this is TV) was to evacuated the walking deads from the relocation camp area.
We have this kind of shot, where the zombies are walking along the roads:
The first thing I thought of was: that really looks like the videos of the Middle East migrants made with drones in Eastern Europe, where long lines of refugees are walking in the countryside: