A Privileged Source of Information


Laura Di Gregorio


Who can still claim to be in tune with this world?


The search for harmony is a comprehensible need but not an easy task. We are constantly confronted – either indirectly, or for those less fortunate, directly - with wars, ecological disasters, poverty, injustice, illness ... Of course one might say that there is nothing new under the sun. Nevertheless there is a peculiar feeling to this century: a certain perplexity, an irritating lack of original proposals.

To manage the kind of hyper-global-awareness with which we are faced daily, we require more refined tools. Both highly individualistic approaches and their alternative, mass phenomena, are demonstrating their weaknesses, their violence, and above all their futility. Assuming that we do not want to belong to fanatical political groups or radical religious movements; that we are not keen on fashion – just for a few seconds! – or are not particularly moved by loud marketing strategies nor by Tibetan meditation. What remains at our disposal?


This question may be seen as the starting point for the literary pieces by Charles Dantzig and Najwa Barakat. The first by using sharp irony; the second by following the ways of an existential search for one’s own inner tune.

Tuning is a metaphor for a particular talent that is much in demand in our complex society: a sort of engineering spirit. Being in tune implies a high sensibility, being receptive, appreciating nuances and fine distinctions – just like the hi-fi technology described by Denis Morecroft.

These elements are challenges shared by the politics and economics of a society as well as its culture. From the self-determination process of the Australian aborigines to the implementation of social rights in Brazil. We will even see how economic institutions like central banks are putting more and more emphasis on the transparency and efficiency of their sophisticated communications.

Tuning in to ourselves does not reflect an implicit anxiety for modernity at all costs. It is enough to read Ralf Dahrendorf’s interview to reflect on the tangible role played by figures from the past. And of course, this is equally true for any historical analysis – look at the example of the cooee sound in the history of Australian music.


Actually, the most fascinating aspect of any kind of tuning process is its open structure. Far more than a purely technical approach, efforts to be in tune with this world reveal our greatest passion, that is to say: the ability to honestly examine the frightful nature of mankind’s dilemmas and nonetheless attempt to solve them.