Filmmaker Adam Curtis discusses power, politics and his searing cybernetic vision of the future.

The notion of cybernetics looks at the whole world, from society to cells, as systems. For Curtis, it is a highly political ideology whereby systems of nature and systems of computers have become intertwined.

“It’s a beautiful vision of this interconnected world, resonant of the cyber-utopian mood of our time, bleeding into nature”.

Curtis sees the increasing salience of cybernetics as a fundamental shift in the way we view human beings.

“We are moving away from the old enlightenment idea than human beings are separate, above the rest of the world and can shape and bend the world. In fact we are all components in systems of an interwoven network where everyone is connected”.

In this connected world, Curtis argues democracy is not about lots of individuals, but about mediating the powerful. Regulating those who often use their unequal access to power at the expense of the weak.

“It’s about electing people who will stand up and represent the weak and negotiate against the powerful. All evidence in western society shows power becoming more concentrated and unequal.”

First broadcast 20/05/11