When I began this project I was going to create something in the manner of Chris Marker's San Soliel with clips and narrative, using a story. My final video did not quite end up like this. I had the idea and feeling of my original idea which was about Weltschmerz and the mass feeling of anxiety in uncertain times but the edit itself was more like a music video as it features goth rock music, a woman dancing and, world crisis through the eyes of those experiencing it. It reminded me more of the beginning of Sense 8.
This is a little like Sans Soleil on speed, the world can be seen through the people, things, places, event, nature, people laughing, dancing. Sense 8 itself was the story of; 'eight strangers from different parts of the world who suddenly become mentally and emotionally linked due to an unknown evolutionary leap. It explores subjects that its writers felt sci-fi shows tend to ignore such as politics, identity, sexuality, gender, and religion.' (Fandom Sense 8, 2023). I enjoyed the ideas in Sense 8 about connection, the universialty of experience and that it what I wanted to bring through in my own short piece, the universal feeling of anxiety, this collective unrest within us. In Sense 8, the cast expressed that the series; 'Sense8 is an artistic construct built on ‘celebration’, ‘connection’, ‘diversity’ and ‘difference’.' (Gerasopoulos, 2018). Looking at anxiety levels across the world Deloitte states that there is a 'polycrisis', this means; 'Collectively, the world has confronted a lot over the last few years. Pandemic. Inflation. War. Global recession warnings. Energy crisis. Climate change. Some observers are referring to this unique moment in time as “polycrisis”—the convergence of many disparate social, economic, geopolitical, environmental, and technological stressors, whose combined impact surpasses the sum of their parts.' (Rogers & Pieters, 2023) However, in this piece, the argument is that anxiety is actually falling across the world but there are differences depending upon the 'stressors' applied to each country. The report here states that the easing of financial pressure very slightly has made people feel less stressed. The pandemic anxiety is moving away and previously people had shown more anxiety about climate change but with the polycrisis it seems that people are showing less concern about this probably as they have too many other concerns. There is evidence that people today feel much more anxious than in the 1950s. Squires states that today; 'Social support and connectedness have decreased significantly, due in part to rising divorce rates, lower participation in community activities and an increased number of people living alone. Reported trust in others also has declined significantly from the 1950s to the 1990s.' (Squires, 2000) Again we arrive back at that feeling of connectedness and people now crave this connectedness but with the rise in technology this is becoming a more distant communion and this in itself has made people feel loneliness yet at the same time they argue, they are more connected.
We live in strange and daunting times of serious upheaval and change and that is why I chose the clips that I chose for my film, there are wars, protests, unrest, in Britain strikes, financial crisis, NHS crisis, food supply, Brexit, climate change, the list does go on. Times are difficult and they may get harder, the future seems close and not for the greater good.
Rogers, S. and Pieters, L. (2023) A world less anxious, Deloitte Insights. Available at: https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/industry/retail-distribution/consumer-behavior-trends-state-of-the-consumer-tracker/global-anxiety-levels-polycrisis.html (Accessed: 19 November 2023).
Fandom: Sense8 (no date), Sense8 Wiki. Available at: https://sense8.fandom.com/wiki/Sense8 (Accessed: 19 November 2023).
Gerasopoulos, V. (2018) Sense8: Aspiring for ‘a different story about difference’ - mai: Feminism & visual culture, MAI. Available at: https://maifeminism.com/sense8-aspiring-for-a-different-story-about-difference/ (Accessed: 19 November 2023).
Squires, S. (2000) The age of anxiety, The Washington Post. Available at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/lifestyle/wellness/2000/12/19/the-age-of-anxiety/300b209d-d217-4dbe-98cf-7a9d3b822420/ (Accessed: 19 November 2023).