“We have reached a crossroads, we have emerged from what we assumed was normality, things have suddenly overturned. One of our main tasks now—especially those of us who are not sick, are not frontline workers, and are not dealing with other economic or housing difficulties—is to understand this moment, what it might require of us, and what it might make possible.”
–Rebecca Solnit from The Impossible Has Already Happened: What coronavirus can teach us about hope
Seeing everything means recognizing the ultimate fact that all things that exist are mutually connected into a single whole, even if the connections between them are not yet known to us. Seeing everything also means a completely different kind of responsibility for the world, because it becomes obvious that every gesture “here” is connected to a gesture “there,” that a decision taken in one part of the world will have an effect in another part of it, and that differentiating between “mine” and “yours” starts to be debatable.
So it could be best to tell stories honestly in a way that activates a sense of the whole in the reader’s mind, that sets off the reader’s capacity to unite fragments into a single design, and to discover entire constellations in the small particles of events. To tell a story that makes it clear that everyone and everything is steeped in one common notion, which we painstakingly produce in our minds with every turn of the planet.
That is why I believe I must tell stories as if the world were a living, single entity, constantly forming before our eyes, and as if we were a small and at the same time powerful part of it.
Olga Tokarczuk from Nobel Prize in Literature acceptance speech