Noga Arikha

Philosopher and Historian of Ideas, Paris, London

Noga Arikha is a philosopher and historian of ideas. She is an associate fellow of the Warburg Institute (London), an honorary fellow of the Center for the Politics of Feelings, and a research associate at the Institut Jean Nicod of the Ecole Normale Supérieure (Paris). Her books include Passions and Tempers: A History of the Humours (2007) and The Ceiling Outside: The Science and Experience of the Disrupted Mind (2022).

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The hand-held’s tale

Noga Arikha

I asked this because we are so used to constant change, so used to the next technological fix, the perpetual, unstoppable, ever-increasing growth of technological power, the transformation of cities and, sadly, landscapes by the drive for more, better, further. Sure, this is already an old story, and hence mine is somewhat of a rhetorical question. After all people started bemoaning change with the industrial revolution; and some people, like the Italian Futurists, celebrated it. But the rate of change has only accelerated, and the process cannot be stopped. Yet I still remember visiting old peasants in the French or Italian countryside who only spoke their own “patois” or “dialetto”, and...

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