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Geometry of Control: shopping


Cultural lesion manifests itself on every level. One of the consequences is a ubiquitous preoccupation with control and fear. This culture of control is “in your face”, affects the hardware of walls and openings precisely because all social control and self-control, or rather the values and norms that underpin a civilization are perceived to be lacking. This shows itself in the clearest way in the most elementary patterns of daily existence. Take shopping. The exchange of goods in certain areas is dangerous. Or rather on should say that the owning of goods in certain areas is dangerous, so that their exchange for money becomes subject to the most extraordinary system: the hole in the wall made attractive by advertising. This is how it works. A young man comes up to the hole or the little door and shouts: “Mammalu, give me a box-drink nuh.” Or something that sounds similar. The shutter opens with an empty hand. Money is put into it. The hand withdraws to come out again a little later with a box or a bag. And then again it emerges with change. After that the shutter closes, the transaction is complete.

Kerosene shop in Lizard Town
Mamalus near Heroes Circle
Shop in Downtown Kingston
Shop in Kingston, Orange Street


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