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Discussion of America

Discussion of America

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Published by shibaak
A discussion of Baudrillard's
A discussion of Baudrillard's

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Published by: shibaak on Apr 05, 2013
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Shahnaz ShahtoosiMLCS 699 - Contemporary Visual CultureMarch 4, 2013Midterm Exam - Question 3Dr. Elena Siemens
America, by Jean Baudrillard
Figure 1
. City In The Desert
1
 
1. Inkscape (Painter). (September 30, 2008).
City In The Desert 
[Painting]. Desert City (Inkscape Drawing).Retrieved from: http://enderra.com/2008/09/30/desert-city-inkscape-drawing/desert-landscape2/.
 
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America is the "absolute simulacrum", the ultimate "hyperreality of everything". Baudrillard comes to prove
 Astral America
(Baudrillard, 1989, pp. 27-74) in "cities which are not cities", but deserts. America is the fascinatingnonsense; where there is the "stunning fusion of a radical lack of culture andnatural beauty, of the wonder of nature and the absolute simulacrum", "mixture of extreme irreferentiality and deconnection overall"; where "culture itself is a desert[... and] has to be a desert so that everything can be equal and shine out in the samesupernatural form". Where the sites of natural beauty are not "heavy with meaning,with nostalgia"; In Baudrillard's
 America
, there are millions of anonymous faces, but it is an empty desert (Baudrillard, 1989, pp. 121-128).For Baudrillard, we live in the hyperreal world; where we think that we seereality, but in fact, it is where everything is shaped through images which do notexist in reality. In our world, the multitude of media shapes and modifieseverything. He is particularly insisting that we live not in the real world, but itscopy, and this copy is shaped through images, signs and symbols; where we justhave simulated stimuli (Baudrillard, 2006, pp. 70-74). In
 Astral America
, he speaksabout Disney Land as a type of hyperreality, where everything is made in real sizeto appear 
real 
and this system makes it attractive for people who feel that there,they can have more reality with technology and therefore, they go to visit there, buy their products and so on. But, in fact, Disney Land is an
imaginary world 
 
 
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which is not real, and therefore it is hyperreal (Baudrillard, 1989, p. 49 & 56). Andthat's the way Baudrillard looks at all the world, not just Disney Land. He arguesthat today simulation is everywhere; we have the proliferation of "models of a real"without origin and it is our world; a hyperreality, a pure simulacrum (Baudrillard,2006, pp. 70-74).In
 America
, Baudrillard's language is poetic and full of metaphors, but heclearly shows the underlying notions of his studies that signs and images showwhat America is; A simulacrum, a hyperreality; the ultimate nonsense meaning, theultimate ridiculous civilization. He knew he would see such America, but came toconfirm his previous established images of astral America; to confirm that "there isno seduction, but there is an absolute fascination -- the fascination of the verydisappearance of all aesthetic and critical forms of life in the irradiation of anobjectless neutrality", that "there is no hope" (Baudrillard, 1989, pp. 121-128).Baudrillard is pessimistic. In this desert forever, Everything is"reappropriated by speech, by play, by distance, by artifice"; it is a fantastic spacewhich lacks everything that "forms European mental and social habitus"; butunfortunately, this captivating disaster of fascinating nonsense is proliferating in alldirections to devour the whole of European civilization and there is no way to getout of it. The whole Europe is eroded by the new form of American civilization

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