At the onset of this project, we promised that these stories wouldn’t add up and, as a collection of extreme conditions, they don’t. As we suggested in the introduction, each of these investigations posits a natural philosophy, an autonomous theoretical condition that sometimes appears to mesh with the others but often doesn’t.

One day, against of all of our stated intentions, we observed a theme emerging, a common concern with the very problem at the heart of Empire (as well as of religion, the State and other institutions of power): our overwhelming desire to acquiesce and give ourselves up. Invariably, ignoring the admonishments of Nietzsche, designers and theorists assume that power emanates from the top down, that the oppressed individual wants to be free, and that action from the bottom-up is the method for achieving this. But this is precisely the inverse of what we observe. These stories of humans relentlessly striving to be different only prove their desire for sameness.

So too, in our relationships with objects, collectively we don’t so much wish to be free—to escape the world of objects and attachments—but to mmerse ourselves within them.

Do we really want freedom? If we can dare to say “maybe not” for a moment, then what do our actions betray about our desires? Blue Monday does not offer solutions, instead it suggests that our mass drive to give ourselves up is not a passive action. Instead of condemning this drive (as if we really wanted to or even could) this book offers a collection of stories that just perhaps, hint at another possibility, a first step: self-awareness.