The 9/11 Prophetic Détournment of Don DeLillo

If you are a fan of Don DeLillo’s work you’ve probably already seen that his 1997 novel Underworld has a cover that resembles the press photos of 9/11 four years later. But, and there is a but, have you noticed the way he also foresees the deconstructive nature of digital mass media in the epilogue of the book? It’s so beautiful to read, almost like a section from Of Grammatology was to be crossed with Memories.


asger jorn

and you try to imagine the word on the screen becoming a thing in the world, taking all its meanings, its sense of serenities and contentments out into the streets somehow,
its whisper of reconciliation, a word extending itself ever outward, the tone of
agreement or treaty, the tone of repose, the sense of mollifying silence, the tone of
hail and farewell, a word that carries the sunlit ardor of an object deep in
drenching noon, the argument of binding touch, but it’s only a sequence of pulses
on a dullish screen and all it can do is make you pensive—a word that spreads a
longing through the raw sprawl of the city and out across the dreaming bourns and
orchards to the solitary hills.


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