“When I conceived these talks, it was a rather interesting time in my life,” explained the director of the Museum of Contemporary Cuts to John J. Francescutti, editorial and social media manager. “Being in the United States had always been a desire of mine which has always clashed against the reality of a country in which homogenization is a must, and differences and dissent are not solely frowned upon but actively discouraged. Of course in a country in which differences are in a large parts of the population it was politically necessary to impose, at the level of civil society, a sense of conformism. This is a blanket form of conformism which is truly transpolitical and crosses both major political parties. To conform within pre-established notions of existence, behavior, thought, and even assumption of conformity itself is a must.”
J. J. Francescutti — “What pushed you then to conceive this particular framework?”
L. A. — “It was the need to show that conformity has no set values and that even transgression can become a form of assimilation if there are rules on what transgression is and what is not. I had decided to show the students what conformity was but also the large variety of alternatives to the reality that they were experiencing as privileged adults in the United States of America. Despite the harsh realities of that country they can’t compare with being held in a Libyan prison or living as an underprivileged adult in parts of the world in which freedoms were curtailed. I would have liked for them to reflect on the lack of freedom within the United States itself and the presence of a vast underprivileged class that is willfully kept outside the so called civil society. I wanted for them to consider how much the political confrontation based on race, gender, and abilities was a distraction from the real issue of class which traverses American society from North to South, from East to West.”
J. J. Francescutti — “Did you succeed?”
L.A. — “I am not sure. Intellectual awakening takes time. Very long time, in some cases. And then, when it happens, and in whatever manner it happens as a sudden blinding revelation or as a slow understanding of things that suddenly seem utterly obvious, in whatever way the revelation happens it is always only partial. I am incredibly Parmenidean in my understanding of reality and teaching.
It is right that you learn all things,
Both the unshaking heart of well-persuasive truth,
and the beliefs of mortals, in which there is no true trust.
One can only show and demonstrate the tools to attain knowledge. Have the students learnt something? Will anyone learn anything from these interviews and from the new ones to come? Only time will tell. We can only try to put forward a different perspective. No matter the costs.”