Region/Concept: Europe, Space
Sub-Concepts: Battue, Bloodletting, The Shepherd and his Rebel Game
Description: Arms experts find 12-gauge Remington shotgun (deer) slug—hunting ammunition—in Independence Square, possible use by riot police against Ukrainian protestors.
Battue: a tactic by which hunters scare animals into a killing zone or ambush, using the beating of sticks (a cracking sound impeccably imitated by the clap of gunfire). The square — home to the uprising at its dawn — here serves as a radical quarantine, fabricated by the shepherd-turned-hunter to smother a political sickness. Predictably, the state behaved badly. Predictably, the people took to the square. Predictably, the military was unleashed. Though the people have been herded, are effectively contained in the designated space for dissent, the threat of contagion endures — alive in and carried by the air — until its hosts have expired. They must be cleansed of this infectious fidgeting. The body of each herd member must be drained of its plasma via perforation — the hunter’s bullet — and the body of the herd — here, the rebel game — must be bled of its sustenance. It is an ancient medicinal ritual, this bloodletting. A methodical purging (of rebellious biology), which must take place if the rest of society’s humors are to maintain perfect balance and health. For the pathogen is not merely a germ present within the revolutionary agent, but the revolutionary agent is itself a germ within the larger revolutionary cell, and that cell becomes the pathogen against civilization. It may appear as though the survival of society no longer depends on hunting and ritual, but the elements of the hunt have simply been modified to suit the fittest of the modern world. And though they once hurriedly guzzled the spurting blood of fallen gladiators — in the hopes of assimilating their strengths — their own vitalities have grown monstrous, and blood is now wasted, left to course into the sewers.