The horizon of our time is marked by the Fukushima event. Compared to the noisy catastrophes of the earthquake and the tsunami, Tokyo’s silent apocalypse is more frightening and suggests a new framework of social expectation for daily life on this planet. The megalopolis is directly exposed to the Fukushima fallout, but life is proceeding almost normally. Only a few people have abandoned the city. Most citizens have stayed there, buying mineral water as they have always done, breathing with face masks on their mouths as they have always done. A few cases of air and water contamination are denounced. Concerns about food safety have promised US officials to halt the importation of certain foods from Japan. But the Fukushima effect does not imply a disruption of social life: poison has become a normal feature of daily life, the second nature we have to inhabit.

Franco “Bifo” Berardi, The Uprising: On Poetry and Finance