«I believe that today the car is the equivalent of the great Gothic cathedrals, a great vintage creation conceived passionately by unknown artists, consumed in its image, if not in its use, by a whole people that appropriates with it a perfectly magical object». (Roland Barthes about the Citroen Déesse). The car, among the objects of everyday life, is perhaps the one that has impressed the most evident transformation to the human environment and its conception of the passing of time. The pervasiveness with which the car has been introduced into our daily life has certainly not been a painless phenomenon. The car suffers a singular contradiction: it is a symbol of economic well-being, yet cities with more vehicles are those in which one lives worse. It is in fact a weapon available to all, even the most dangerous, if we look at the use made of it in recent terrorist attacks, and yet a particular license is not required to use it. The car, with the exception of the house and some other luxury goods, is by far the most expensive consumer object that the ordinary man can have, yet his market grows more each year: perhaps only the mobile phones exceed its trend to increase sales. Nothing more than the car is today the mirror of a changing society, in constant balance between development and crisis. After all, everyone entrusts the car with the image of himself in the world, his social status, taste and culture. Today the car is facing a decisive challenge for its future, which is also that of the economy and environmental sustainability. It is difficult to predict what form the car of the future will have: it is certain that in order to continue to be (to use the title of Roland Barthes' essay dedicated to cars) “a very common thing” will radically change the way we think ourselves and our technological extensions.
|Number of pages||145|
|Publication status||Published - 2018|