"As Benjamin pointed out when analysing the Parisian shopping arcades of the 19th century, the whole environment seemed designed to induce nirvana rather than critical awareness. And the purpose of many other cultural institutions –museums and cultural heritage centres, spaces for entertainment, exhibitions and festivals– seems to be the courier of nostalgia, the production of aseptic collective memories, the creation of aesthetic sensibilities without any critical sense and the absorption of future possibilities in an eternally present non-conflictive field. The continuous shows of the culture of the market place, including the commodification of entertainment itself, help encourage political indifference."

David Harvey, Spaces for Hope

David Harvey is a lecturer in geography at the City University of New York and the London School of Economics. He is the author of the book Spaces for Hope (Spanish translation published by Akal, 2003).