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Jean Baudrillard Essay

In his work Simulacra and Simulation, a post-modern sociologist, Jean Baudrillard discusses how Capitalism surrounds the authenticity and social life. He says; “Whence the characteristics hysteria of our times: that of the production and reproduction of the real… That is why today this ‘material’ production is that of the hyperreal itself. ” Baudrillard examines how authenticity is displaced in the fields such as economics, art, science, politics, media and cinema by concentrating on America and how an unreal world disconnected with authenticity is created.

Baudrillard says the real has turned into a simulation. What causes that is the culture itself. The universe we live in is the universe of simulation. Baudrillard states that it is slided into chaos as a result that authenticity is atrophied by simulacras and resembles that situation to the Mobius effect, a vicous circle. At this stage, it is stated that inner explosion will be experienced. “Illusion is no longer possible, because the real is no longer possible. ” The real devoid of origin and authenticity is reproduced by means of models. This is called simulation.

Today, authenticity is generated by cells, matrixes, memories and instruction models. By this means, it is possible to reproduce infinitely many numners of authenticity. We will no longer need rational authenticity, because authenticity is not in a position to cope with the ideal and negative processes. From now on, there is executional authenticity, because it is devoid of the imaginariness bundling it up. In a hyper-space devoid of that atmosphere, authenticity resembling combinative models and produced synthetically is, in other saying, hyper-reality.

With this transition to the different space that shows we have no relation with the perspective peculiar to authenticity or reality any more, the simulation era in which sender systems are liquidated has begun. Here, we talk about authenticity, not imitation, parody ,or image. And instead of the original one, we see the indicator of that authenticity, in other saying it is the event of dissuading which presents its executional twin instead of the real process.

It is such an event, such a machine that has all indicators of authenticity, that shorts all phases of authenticity, that scatters the programmable indicators to the four winds by maximizing them like cancerous cells. From now on, we can talk about hyper-reality devoid of all kinds of imaginary and real differences, based on models meandering only around the same orbit, and composed of the production of distinctness simulation. To dissimulate is to pretend not to have the thing possessed, and to simulate is to pretend to have the thing not possessed.

The first one refers to the entity, the other one refers to the absence. For example; the person pretending to be ill tries to convince us that he is ill by laying on the bed, but a person who simulates an illness is someone having the symptoms concerning that illness. In that case, to pretend or to dissimulate does not damage reality principle, in a word there is a difference that is always tried to be concealed between them and reality. However, simulation tries to shatter the difference between authenticity and imitation, and the difference between authenticity and imaginary.

It is impossible to evaluate whether the person simulating is really ill or not. Also, in religion, Baudrillard explains how the faith in God is simulated, how God is deactivated by degrading faith into indicators: “I forbade that there be any simulacra in the temples because the divinity that animates nature can never be represented. ” It is not true, in fact. Because, that divine power can be reanimated. For example; what happens if that power is increased in the form of icon or simulacra?

Does it still have the features of divine power when it is converted to visual theology based on images? By putting its magnificence and attraction into effect, it may cause that divine powerto disappear. Thanks to that trick concocted through icons, the appearance takes the place of sensible idea of God. Iconoclasts are people who shatters divine images and are supporters of Byzantian Imperial against worshipping divine images. This struggle that lasts for thousand years and that always frightens iconoclasts, has not come to an end.

What causes iconoclasts to be afraid of absolute power that simulacras have is that iconoclasts have perceived they can delete the idea of God from human conscious and realized that awesome reality refers to the fact that God never exists, and can only exist through simulacras. Therefore, iconoclasts hate images and try to shatter them. After these interpretations Baudrillard explains how images in Western society have displaced the reality; “… the stake will always have been the murderous power of images…

To this murderous power is opposed that of representations as a dialectical power, the visible and intelligible mediation of the Real. All Western faith and good faith became engaged in this wager on representation: that a sign could refer to the depth of meaning, that a sign could be exchanged for meaning and that something could guarantee this exchange- God of course… Then the whole system becomes wightless, it is no longer itself anything but gigantic simulacrum- not real, but a simulacrum, that is to say never exchanged for itself, in an uninterrupted circuit without reference or circumference.

Such is simulation, insofar as it is opposed to representation… ” Baudrillard states that there are deep differences between revitalization and simulation, and defends there is no connection between reality and simulation ontologically. Revitalization accepts that there is equivalence principle between indicator and reality, but simulation is completely opposite the utopia of equivalence principle, and denies indicator as a value, it is senders being reversed and murdered. In response to the revitalization whose simulation is fake, he bundles the order of revitalization converted to simulacra which is a simulation.


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