Let’s break the clocks and refuse the quickening of our lives

Few could have predicted two decades ago that Slow Food visions of the good life would inspire such innovative thinking about how our media choices affect fellow human beings and the planet that we share.

It’s remarkable that food theory captured the public imagination at a time when many other critical approaches fell short, as Ben Agger observed. Like me, he visualized a new stage of civilization where media could be used to slow down our lives, redefine human progress, and pursue greater harmony with nature. In advocating for what he called “slowmodernity,” he refused to make the false choice between a Luddite retreat (slow) and a digitized utopia (fast).

Instead, we should be free to move at variable paces, “going back and moving forward, mastering time so that it serves us, not the other way around,” he said. “We must break the clocks, resisting and refusing the quickening of our lives. We must not allow ourselves to be overscheduled, hurried, hassled; we must take our sweet time, dawdling in order to slow down the flow.”

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