domenica 15 novembre 2009


The post-war economic expansion, also known as the "long boom" and the "Golden Age of Capitalism", was an international period of economic prosperity in the mid 20th century which followed the end of World War II in 1945, and lasted until the early 1970s, ending with the collapse of the Bretton Woods system in 1971, the 1973 oil crisis, and the 1973–1974 stock market crash. Historians are divided on periodizing that unrepeatable stage, which varied from country to country, continent to continent. But there's one thing you cannot discuss: the "boom" began after the bloodiest war in history, when the West was in ashes, and finished when the old welfare had been reprised and far exceeded. Europe and Western world would never again reach a time like that.
It is no coincidence if ever in that twenty years (or thirty years) you reached the maximum rate of fertility that the West and the world have never crossed. In both the human field, with more than 77 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964, and the artistic field, where popular culture lived an unrivalled season of creativity.
With a simplistic equation, you can support that fertility has always been parallel to happiness. And is an equation that takes an almost physical significance, even where development and the boom took place, albeit marginally: it was in the unforgettable reportages of Kapuscinski, where a recently de-colonialized Africa was packed out by consumables - Mirinda soft drinks, primitive tv ads, funny cars - and still colourful, chaotic, in turmoil. Happy.
The same artistic and demographic explosion have been lived by all peoples just leaving some sort of long and grey dictatorship, as the "Asian tigers". Or those giants for years exploited by the colonial powers and now risen again, even though with a thousand legacies of misery, as the Indian subcontinent, Brazil, Iran, Indonesia. And let us not forget the two-Germany of 1989: the Trabant car getting the wheels for the first time on the capitalist ground; the assaults to supermarkets: old fashion shows that are concrete signs of change. Something that an aged, replete and asleep country as Italy cannot understand. In The Millionaire (2008) film, the Bombay misérables followed the television deeds of their hero through the screen shared in an overcrowded shack, in the same fashion of the Roman and Milanese suburbs of the 1950s. Happiness is the physical sense of consumption, the overabundance, the landscape of cranes (like in Dubai or China). The feeling to be a rampant and young community.
Of that special fertility, many years after, feels a harrowing lack. Aside from wars and massacres nothing really new happened, and nothing really new seems to expect us at the gate. The major demographic, economic and cultural expansion seems to happen elsewhere and to the capitals of the old empires remains the training of their executives leaders. This great stagnation is as theft of hope. A future equal to the present may be sufficient for the elderly, may even reassure them. But is physiologically hostile to young people: it breaks the equation between happiness and fertility. Our only hope is to live at least a couple of boom, who knows where and who knows how. There are walls to tear down. They're often invisible.

1 commento:

Progetto Cicero ha detto...

Ciao, mi chiamo Guido Mastrobuono e sono un cacciatore di articoli e fotografie per un concorso che si chiama “Costruire Felicità” e mette a confronto articoli e foto che trattino il lavoro di chi dedica se stesso alla costruzione della felicità della sua gente (vedi l’indirizzo )
Il tema può essere trattato dal punto di vista poetico, filosofico, sociale o politico.

A mio avviso, questa tua opera arricchirebbe il nostro concorso e volevo suggerirti di inserirla.

Il concorso, in realtà, è una scusa per convincere la gente a metterci a disposizione spunti per la discussione. Noi poi ne parliamo e ci creiamo un’idea nostra sui più svariati argomenti.
Infatti, la concorrenza tra autori non è una cosa che ci appartiene: noi creiamo nella collaborazione. E dal confronto con gli altri, noi aumentiamo il nostro sapere.
Comunque la pubblicazione offerta in premio ai vincenti è vera ed effettiva.

Se lo vorrai, potrai tranquillamente inserire, al piede degli articoli o come commento alle tue foto, un link al tuo blog o alle tue gallerie di immagini in modo da renderle più note e facilmente raggiungibili.

Un saluto

Guido Mastrobuono