Jenseits. Über das Unheimliche

Sigmund Freud taught us that, although counterintuitive, it is not what is unfamiliar or unknown that we perceive as uncanny. What is uncanny about the uncanny is that it is actually so close and familiar to us; it is so much a part of our own four walls or the cellar of our own home that we can no longer recognise it. A dialectician, on the other hand, might point out that something uncanny is perhaps neither unknown nor very close, but rather something that falls into neither the one category nor the other. The familiar in the strange; the strange in the familiar. The tunes we remember from our childhood, replayed in a grotesque way. This is when we find ourselves in “Uncanny Valley”. In this shady landscape, we can no longer tell: Are you a human being or a machine? Is this reality, or is it nothing and nowhere? Do you still love me, or are you already torturing me? Are you my creation, or am I yours? Am I alive or dead? Do these cracked, moss-covered walls have a soul? And you? Are you still alive, or are you dead inside, my friend?

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