Open Denial of the False Belief of a Disenchanted Modernity through the Testimony of Blackness as Criminality, Presented to the Miserable and Pitiful Free World in Memory of its Error
I wrote about the dancing plague that occurred in the medieval city of Strasbourg during the summer of 1518 as disrupting the rhythm of daily life through rhythm itself. What I found was a structural inscription of a collective resistance that could never have been organised in advance. I want to talk about this extraordinary event in relation to popular rebellions of the time, such as the Bundschuh uprisings (1493–1517) leading up to the German Peasants’ War (1524–1525). Perhaps we will glimpse what was irretrievably lost to a way of life squeezed from both sides of the emerging Christian and class divides at the dawn of modernity. I propose that all this has a bearing in no small measure on the situation of people coming to Europe from Africa today.
Nida Ghouse is a writer living in Berlin. Her essay “The Whistle in the Voice” appears in the publication Ankersentrum (Surviving in the ruinous ruin) accompanying Natascha Süder Happelmann’s presentation for the German Pavilion.