The new curses of tomb space | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 3, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2043-068X
  • E-ISSN: 2043-0698



In the 1980s, the United States Department of Energy created The Human Interference Task Force, a group of semioticians, physicists, science-fiction writers and anthropologists tasked with creating an everlasting warning to prevent future beings from unintentionally disturbing nuclear waste repositories. The proposed systems ranged from warning orbital satellites to glowing radioactive cat companions, to setting up an atomic priest hood, to surrounding the site with giant black thorns. These paranoic strategies of radical closure can be further examined in comparison and contradiction to the openness of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory in which massive quantities of pure water are housed in order to detect the passage of weakly interacting neutrinos. This site of inviting invasion is at the same time isolated and buried deep in the earth. These two examples demonstrate that the attempt to combat and the attempt to welcome contingency involve complex and twisted modes of closure and openness as demonstrated by the work of Reza Negarestani. By investigating these models, I hope to investigate how the intimacies of geological formation cross into and disrupt the purported stability of space (both as outer space and abstract space) in relation to chemistry, both inorganic and astrobiological.


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): entombment; geophilosophy; Negarestani; nuclear waste; paranoia; speculation
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