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The Yes Men: Bhopal Disaster

From In Search of a Recuperative Aesthetics

Another example of a work that depends on context for effect is the series of “identity corrections” by the Yes Men, in which they impersonate corporate representatives who confess to grave crimes and offer radical reparations. Perhaps most notable among these is when one of the Yes Men posed as a spokesperson for Dow Chemical and did a television interview with the BBC in which they accepted full responsibility for and offered compensation to the victims of the catastrophic gas leak at the Dow-owned Union Carbide pesticide plant in Bhopal, India, in 1984. In these interventions, the Yes Men impersonated corporate representatives confessing their crimes and professing radical reparations. By presenting the world as it could be rather than reflecting its cruelties, the Yes Men created situations in which those in power have to either change, or admit to their atrocities.

December 10, 2018

The Yes Men

Curated by

Kayla Anderson