Games Send Audiences Around The World Into A State Of Awe—And Oblivion
Roman satirical poet Juvenal first wrote about “panem et circenses”—translated as “bread and circuses”—around 100 AD. Centuries that have passed, though his message still resonates to this day.
He wrote with disdain about how citizens effectively gave up their political voices in exchange for cheap food and entertainment—to watch gladiator matches in the coliseum. Those matches effectively were a mass distraction from societal ills, whether poverty or impending wars.
Thousands of years later, nothing has really changed. In theory, the Olympics are free of politics, a force for change and a global "coming together." In reality they're just inordinately expensive, large-scale world platforms for countries and governments to promote the status quo and distract citizens from myriad concerns they face in their daily lives. FULL STORY
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