“The principle is to exaggerate: that is how to destroy reality.”—Jean Baudrillard
One of Baudrillard’s most intriguing concepts is reversibility. Pushed beyond the point of no return, the entire consumer-driven capitalist apparatus will collapse under the weight of its own logic. One example: In February 2005 a mob of bargain-seeking Ikea customers in North London caused a riot, fighting over furniture and bed frames, forcing police to close the grand opening of the retail giant after thirty minutes of chaos (see also William Merrin in Jean Baudrillard: Fatal Theories 61-82).
On the page at least, the theorist’s task is to steer oppressive systems like racism, sexism and classism over the edge, in the hopes of forging a path to radical freedom.
With emancipation in mind, I’ve decided to push my depression beyond the limits of its own ill-logic. Some principles to exaggerate: I shall listen to and absorb all negative thoughts; I shall accept my inferiority complex as absolute truth; I shall maintain no hope of recovery, etc.
Rather than fight against it, I shall afford my depression full range of motion. Delighting in a presumed but ultimately false sense of victory, my depression will ignite the flames of its own implosion.
Liberation through misery: the goal is to survive the onslaught of sadness and anxiety—to come out on the other side of depression refreshed and empowered to finally live without debilitating guilt and self-doubt. It’s a thought I’m free to entertain even in my darkest dreams.