PEN America Blog
In literature, dystopic narrative has been used hubristically as a way to face one’s own mortality. An aging author, say someone like John Updike, conjures an apocalyptic narrative because he cannot imagine a world without his own consciousness.
Over 62 days, PEN analyzed the use of metaphors in surveillance news coverage. We found that there is rich thematic diversity in the types of metaphors that are used, but there is also a failure of imagination in using literature to describe surveillance.
I do not censor my work though I do feel intruded on, and it’s an issue both of privacy and of freedom of expression. Self-censoring and self-surveillance are power’s goons, and the more you have to lose (or think you have to lose) the more afraid you become.