Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Lecture 5 - Hyperreality - Jean Baudrillard

Coke - cognitive illusion - "we taste the branding". We care more about the logo than the product.

Baudrillard (1929 - 2007).
French philosopher, critic, social and cultural theorist, (Pioneering theorist) Post structuralism.

Other included - Bathes, Focault, Cixous, Deleuze, Dirrida.

Structuralism theroists:
Levi Strauss, Bathes, Lacan, Kristera, Leroi-Gourhan, Althusser.

Debord - Marxist theorist. Revised Marx's main concepts to analyse commodity relations in the age of consumer culture. Commodity society had become immense accumulation of spectacles - looking at images and making sense.

Marx - pioneering philosopher and political economic theorist
Developed the critique of political economy.
Capitalist society in the industrial age functions on the basis of the 'labor theory of value' and exchange of commodities.
Capitalism constitutes one kind of mode of production and that it would eventually be replaced by another society - socialist / communist etc.

"All that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profound".
Money is an abstraction of value.

Saussure - Linguist and pioneer of semiotics - language functions also on the basis of a theory of value - "linguist value" rather than labour value and basis of exchange (signs) exchange words, signs, images, gives the value of an object. 

Mauss - anthropologist - renowned for the analysis of the economy of the gift.
Explored the idea that gifts are only given as part of an exchange and that the gift always has to be reciprocated in come form.

Bataille - philosopher, novelist. Renowned for his writings on transgression, death and general economy (gift economies, economies based on expenditure without return. E.g. the Potlash.

McLuhan - media theorist who developed the distinction between "hot" and "cool" medias and who argued.

Baudrillard - key works:
Simulacra and Simulation (1981) elaborated hos theory of simulacra - copies of the thing they are intending to represent or stand in for - or - copies of copies. Controversial concept.
Explicitly name checked in the Matrix - ironic postmodern play on themes.

Reflection of the Profound reality - masks and denatures a profound reality.
If there is good there is evil.

3rd masks the absence of a profound reality.
Has no relation to any reality whatsoever - it is it's own pure simulacrum.

Disney character - trying to find the reality - but there is none. Real in the fact it exists.

Santa - hyperreal - real in the fact it exists.
Neither Coke nor Santa are real in the sense of profound reality - pure simulacra - copies of copies.

Why (reality) T.V. is not real - Video editing to make a situation - it is Hyperreal.

Symbolic exchange and death (Baudrillard)
3 orders of simulacra:
The counterfeit - scheme of classical period.
Production - Dominant scheme in industrial era.
Simulation - Dominant scheme in current code - governed phase.

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