Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The car as oikos

Chrysler chairman Robert L. Nardelli, in a New York Times article on the trend to outfit cars with elaborate entertainment technology:

"I think a vehicle today has to be your most favorite room under your roof. It has to bring you gratification; it has to be tranquil. It's incidental that it gets you from Point A to Point B, right?"
Thus the car as oikos. Note that those who are to dwell in this house of the future are deemed incapable of finding gratification in low-tech endeavors: reading, drawing, singing, talking, telling stories, playing "I spy," looking at scenery. All pleasure must be mediated — and, as the Times article details, dangerously distracting to the driver.

More High-Tech Invitations to Take Your Mind Off Road (New York Times)

comments: 1

JuliaR said...

I think it is the consumer mentality that leads us to the car as house. More folks should read Ivan Illych, who talks about such things. He was also a proponent of the bicycle as one of the greatest inventions ever made. We hard core cyclists call people in cars "cagers". Every now and then when I rent a car, I have an odd feeling about rushing around at a non-human pace in a metal box. I don't even turn on the radio in the car any more.