The Origin of the THING

“…the old word “Thing” or “Ding” designated originally a certain type of archaic assembly. Many parliaments in Nordic and Saxon nations still activate the old root of this etymology: Norwegian congressmen assemble in the Storting; Icelandic deputies called the equivalent of ‘thingmen’ gather in the Althing; Isle of Man seniors used to gather around the Ting;the German landscape is dotted with Thingstatten and you can see in many places the circles of stones where the Thing used to stand. Thus, long before designating an object thrown out of the political sphere and standing there objectively and independently, the Ding or Thing has for many centuries meant the issue that brings people together because it divides them.”

- from the Introduction to the catalogue of Making Things Public– Atmospheres of Democracy, MIT Press 2005 (edited by Bruno Latour & Peter Weibel)

via Objective Correlative

No comments:

Post a Comment