The Official World
Marching in Files
The staged and stagy microworlds of murder mysteries resemble bureaucratic comedies. These stand-alone and repeatable artworks make the world of modern office work appear in the world. It makes a world of repeatable motions plausible. Agatha Christie’s novel, Appointment with Death, is a virtual blueprint of the media union of modern society. In effect, systems theory through the shortcut of kitsch. The recent novels of Tom McCarthy-- particularly Remainder, a crime novel of sorts too—provide another live blueprint of art in the systems epoch, and outline what social and aesthetic forms of repetition and citation mean today. These fictional worlds are working models of the official world.