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Thinking about surveillance in the city

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Its uniting role is remarkable also because it corresponds to the role of the main transportation channels during emergencies. Foucault gives an example of a plague-stricken town3.Museums are one more element. Their functions are reverse to the traditional museums: they are no more public displays of the arranged items of human culture with pedagogical and imperial role but rather the enclaves where the artifacts are cluttered as the dear memories of the past (Mapplethorpe’s photographic art neighboring with Koran). And yet, their perfect organisation still reminds of “an Enlightenment object” needed for “the curation of other objects”4. As such, it establishes the pathetic role of the past, its ideals of love and freedom, “embodies the selection and control of artifactual national past and lessons in how people should access this past”5. V’s home memorial to Valerie Page, a lesbian actress, is covered with red roses: in this context, the flowers are the symbol of love and something lost (Ruth, Valerie’s lover, used to plant roses). However, in another context (the Larkhill camp doctor’s story) the rose clearly symbolises the revenge, being involved in a disciplinary act. But even in this case, this is not just an emotional revenge: the whole trick with the rose for this doctor was designed to put give put her diary in the hands of the investigators. History symbolised by such things is V’s way of violent, revengeful discipline. In this light, the fact that V always uses knives is also significant.The idea of ‘simcity’ is one of E. Soja’s “discouses” of the city, the one that corresponds to the ubiquitous totalitarian surveillance of media and the simulacra dystopias in contemporary cultural studies: it is a Matrix-like simulated mechanical world with its servants6. This is the postmodern dystopia of the city filled with hostile digital presence that resembles Bradbury’s Fahrenhit 451. In V for Vendetta, the control over the citizens is suggested by the cameras, quasi-Nazi symbols, and the screens that report daily lies (fig. It is notable that the broadcasting equipment dominates the actually monitoring equipment: the viewer sees the observers more often than he feels the surveillance upon him or herself. This is one more part of the ‘simcity’ myth: when media presence is
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