Retribution, tribalism, and an Apocalypse Aversion Project update
Featuring two more brand new animated shorts
The world-premiere animated shorts just keep on coming! The two videos below (which, like the six other videos we’ve unveiled over the past few months, are collaborations between me and Nikita Petrov) are about (1) the retributive impulse, an important part of “the psychology of tribalism,” and (2) the psychology of tribalism itself.
I hope you’ll check them out—and, if you like them, share this issue of the newsletter via all known social media (or, failing that, mention it to a friend or randomly selected stranger). I also hope you’ll check out our new what-the-hell-is-this-Apocalypse-Aversion-Project-thing site—especially if you’re wondering what the hell this Apocalypse Aversion Project thing is. And, just in case that site doesn’t answer all your questions (it’s in an early stage of its evolution), there’s a brief AAP update right below these two videos.
State of the AAP Address
I’ll keep this brief. I’ve seen the way the ratings drop when the State of the Union Address drags on and on.
Some of you who are paid subscribers may recall my aspiration to write a book about the Apocalypse Aversion Project. You may even recall that this aspiration led me to write both a synopsis of the book and a draft of a first chapter. And you may wonder what happened after that (aside from the obvious loss of momentum, I mean).
Well, I’ve come to believe that if I write an AAP-related book, it should probably focus on the psychology of tribalism more than on AAP per se. I mean, it would certainly frame the importance of addressing that psychology in terms of AAP—you know, I’d explain how we can all help head off a planetary death spiral by getting better at seeing other human beings clearly, and perhaps even going so far as to extend some charity to them. But I think a ‘how to be anti-tribal’ book has more potential to find a decent-sized audience than a book with AAP in its title, and can do at least as much good on a per-reader basis. At least, that’s my current thinking—feel free to weigh in below, in the comments section. I always welcome free advice.
And speaking of anti-tribalism: I haven’t forgotten about my recent flirtation with the idea of enlisting readers (readers who want to be enlisted, I mean) in an anti-tribalism initiative. Figuring out how to do that remains a challenge, but I still think the first step is to get clearer on what kinds of online behaviors we want to encourage and what kinds we want to discourage. I’ll be writing more on that—and soliciting more input on that—down the road.
Meanwhile, this anti-tribalism initiative is a reminder that even if there isn’t going to be an Apocalypse Aversion Project book (or at least an Apocalypse Aversion Project book per se), that doesn’t mean there can’t be an Apocalypse Aversion Project. So stay tuned.
PS: If you’re not currently subscribing to the paid edition of NZN and you want to make sure you get all future news about the evolution of the Apocalypse Aversion Project—well, I have an idea I’d like to bring to your attention: