WHY ASKING WHY? C41 Magazine Issue 11 wants you to question your certainties


Why not asking why? It makes us angry to realise that we are a passive cog in a complex and incomprehensible system; it forces us to take a step back and question the very existence of things. We are all too often conditioned to make decisions that are not in our true interests. The GDPR reassures us, it means we don’t ask too many questions. Society tells us what to buy, what to change and which interests we should have. We hate the idea of being listened to, it scares us, and yet a failure to listen is the reason behind 95% of marriages coming to an end according to the Ecclesiastical Court. We need to make our condition heard, whether in person or live on Instagram. We even pay to do so, negotiating the best price, and spending this money legitimises our opening up to another person: «I’ve paid for this and now you have to listen to me!». Lying down on that couch is the most liberating thing there can be. Mental hygienists earn far more than their dental counterparts and that’s a fact. Because asking why is a way to affirm an absolute truth and that is yet another fact. The fact that therapists use a couch for their sessions with patients is not, in fact, a fact but the collective imagination would like it to be. Films, illustrations and photographs paint the psychologist’s couch as the place where patients can dissect their thoughts and moods. But why? This piece of furniture appeared for the first time in sessions with Sigmund Freud, the father of modern psychoanalysis. Using this supine position, Freud encouraged his patients to “let go”.

We are complex and incomprehensible systems in our own right and, in general, we like to sit down and stretch out, preferably on a design chair with the right price tag.

Featuring: Nadia Lee Cohen, Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Leta Sobjerajski, Marie Cornil, Joan Thiele, Yeon You, Mattea Perrotta, Maya Golyshkina, REKKI, Jawahir Roble, The Bells Angels, Alec Soth, Isabelle Wenzel, Caterina Barbieri and Ruben Spini, Dulce Patria, MASSIMODECARLO, PanamBoyz, Pier Paolo Pasolini.


Time to read
2 min
Words by
Published on
15 July 2021
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