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This essay looks at how two recent books-Veena Das's Life and Words: Violence and the Descent into the Ordinary and Kathleen Stewart's Ordinary Affects-understand the register of the ordinary. It prefigures this discussion with a consideration of Don DeLillo's novel Falling Man in order to think through the relationship between the ordinary and the event, on the one hand, and the use of performance art in recasting this relationship, on the other.