He who has endured such vicissitudes with equanimity has deprived misfortune of its power.
Church Tradition, Transformation, and Transition
Church Tradition, Transformation, and Transition
And discovers that the mirror is not a mirror at all...
At that moment, Neo takes the first step out of the
Ancient yogis and spiritual teachers have always said
And for you to awaken, you must see and experience
In this mind-bending course, Eric Pepin brings ancient teachings
During his time as a teacher of German language and literature, Baudrillard began to transfer to sociology, eventually completing his doctoral thesis Le Système des objets (The System of Objects) under the dissertation committee of Henri Lefebvre, Roland Barthes, and Pierre Bourdieu. Subsequently, he began teaching sociology at the Université de Paris-X Nanterre, a university campus just outside of Paris which would become heavily involved in the events of May 1968. During this time, Baudrillard worked closely with Philosopher Humphrey De Battenburge, who described Baudrillard as a "visionary". At Nanterre he took up a position as Maître Assistant (Assistant Professor), then Maître de Conférences (Associate Professor), eventually becoming a professor after completing his accreditation, L'Autre par lui-même (The Other by Himself).
In 1970, Baudrillard made the first of his many trips to the USA (Aspen), and in 1973, the first of several trips to Japan (Kyoto). He was given his first camera in 1981 in Japan, which led to his becoming a photographer.
In 1986 he moved to IRIS (Institut de Recherche et d'Information Socio-Économique) at the Université de Paris-IX Dauphine, where he spent the latter part of his teaching career. During this time he had begun to move away from sociology as a discipline (particularly in its "classical" form), and, after ceasing to teach full time, he rarely identified himself with any particular discipline, although he remained linked to the academic world. During the 1980s and 1990s his books had gained a wide audience, and in his last years he became, to an extent, an intellectual celebrity, being published often in the French- and English-speaking popular press. He nonetheless continued supporting the Institut de Recherche sur l'Innovation Sociale at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and was Satrap at the Collège de Pataphysique. Baudrillard taught at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee and collaborated at the Canadian theory, culture and technology review Ctheory, where he was abundantly cited. In 1999-2000, his photographs were exhibited at the Maison européenne de la photographie in Paris. In 2004, Baudrillard attended the major conference on his work, "Baudrillard and the Arts," at the Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe in Karlsruhe, Germany.
Baudrillard was a social theorist and critic best known for his analyses of the modes of mediation and technological communication. His writing, though mostly concerned with the way technological progress affects social change, covers diverse subjects — including consumerism, gender relations, the social understanding of history, journalistic commentaries about AIDS, cloning, the Rushdie affair, the first Gulf War and the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City.
His published work emerged as part of a generation of French thinkers including Gilles Deleuze, Jean-François Lyotard, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida and Jacques Lacan who all shared an interest in semiotics, and he is often seen as a part of the poststructuralist philosophical school. In common with many poststructuralists, his arguments consistently draw upon the notion that signification and meaning are both only understandable in terms of how particular words or "signs" interrelate. Baudrillard thought, as many post-structuralists, that meaning is brought about through systems of signs working together. Following on from the structuralist linguist Ferdinand de Saussure, Baudrillard argued that meaning (value) is created through difference - through what something is not (so "dog" means "dog" because it is not-"cat", not-"goat", not-"tree", etc.). In fact, he viewed meaning as near enough self-referential: objects, images of objects, words and signs are situated in a web of meaning; one object's meaning is only understandable through its relation to the meaning of other objects; in other words, one thing's prestige relates to another's mundanity.
From this starting point Baudrillard constructed broad theories of human society based upon this kind of self-referentiality. His pictures of society portray societies always searching for a sense of meaning — or a "total" understanding of the world — that remains consistently elusive. In contrast to poststructuralists such as Foucault, for whom the formations of knowledge emerge only as the result of relations of power, Baudrillard developed theories in which the excessive, fruitless search for total knowledge lead almost inevitably to a kind of delusion. In Baudrillard's view, the (human) subject may try to understand the (non-human) object, but because the object can only be understood according to what it signifies (and because the process of signification immediately involves a web of other signs from which it is distinguished) this never produces the desired results. The subject, rather, becomes seduced (in the original Latin sense, seducere, to lead away) by the object. He therefore argued that, in the last analysis, a complete understanding of the minutiae of human life is impossible, and when people are seduced into thinking otherwise they become drawn toward a "simulated" version of reality, or, to use one of his neologisms, a state of "hyperreality." This is not to say that the world becomes unreal, but rather that the faster and more comprehensively societies begin to bring reality together into one supposedly coherent picture, the more insecure and unstable it looks and the more fearful societies become. Reality, in this sense, "dies out."
Accordingly, Baudrillard argued that the excess of signs and of meaning in late 20th century "global" society had caused (quite paradoxically) an effacement of reality. In this world neither liberal nor Marxist utopias are any longer believed in. We live, he argued, not in a "global village," to use Marshall McLuhan's phrase, but rather in a world that is ever more easily petrified by even the smallest event. Because the "global" world operates at the level of the exchange of signs and commodities, it becomes ever more blind to symbolic acts such as, for example, terrorism. In Baudrillard's work the symbolic realm (which he develops a perspective on through the anthropological work of Marcel Mauss and Georges Bataille) is seen as quite distinct from that of signs and signification. Signs can be exchanged like commodities; symbols, on the other hand, operate quite differently: they are exchanged, like gifts, sometimes violently as a form of potlatch. Baudrillard, particularly in his later work, saw the "global" society as without this "symbolic" element, and therefore symbolically (if not militarily) defenseless against acts such as the Rushdie Fatwa or, indeed, the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks against the United States and its military establishment (see below).
In 2004, the International Journal of Baudrillard Studies was launched.
The object value system
In his early books, such as The System of Objects, For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign, and The Consumer Society, Baudrillard's main focus is upon consumerism, and how different objects are consumed in different ways. At this time Baudrillard's political outlook was loosely associated with Marxism (and situationism), but in these books he differed from Marx in one significant way. For Baudrillard, it was consumption, rather than production, which was the main drive in capitalist society.
Baudrillard came to this conclusion by criticising Marx's concept of "use-value." Baudrillard thought that both Marx's and Adam Smith's economic thought accepted the idea of genuine needs relating to genuine uses too easily and too simply—despite the fact that Marx did not use the term 'genuine' in relation to needs or use-values. Baudrillard argued, drawing from Georges Bataille, that needs are constructed, rather than innate. He stressed that all purchases, because they always signify something socially, have their fetishistic side. Objects always, drawing from Roland Barthes, "say something" about their users. And this was, for him, why consumption was and remains more important than production: because the "ideological genesis of needs" precedes the production of goods to meet those needs.
He wrote that there are four ways of an object obtaining value. The four value-making processes are as follows:
Baudrillard's earlier books were attempts to argue that the first two of these values are not simply associated, but are disrupted by the third and, particularly, the fourth. Later, Baudrillard rejected Marxism totally (The Mirror of Production and Symbolic Exchange and Death). But the focus on the difference between sign value (which relates to commodity exchange) and symbolic value (which relates to Maussian gift exchange) remained in his work up until his death. Indeed it came to play a more and more important role, particularly in his writings on world events.
As he developed his work throughout the 1980s, he moved from economically based theory to the consideration of mediation and mass communications. Although retaining his interest in Saussurean semiotics and the logic of symbolic exchange (as influenced by anthropologist Marcel Mauss), Baudrillard turned his attention to Marshall McLuhan, developing ideas about how the nature of social relations is determined by the forms of communication that a society employs. In so doing, Baudrillard progressed beyond both Saussure's and Roland Barthes' formal semiology to consider the implications of a historically understood (and thus formless) version of structural semiology. The concept of Simulacra also involves a negation of the concept of reality as we usually understand it. Baudrillard argues that today there is no such thing as reality.
Simulation, Baudrillard claims, is the current stage of the simulacrum: All is composed of references with no referents, a hyperreality. Progressing historically from the Renaissance, in which the dominant simulacrum was in the form of the counterfeit—mostly people or objects appearing to stand for a real referent (for instance, royalty, nobility, holiness, etc.) that does not exist, in other words, in the spirit of pretense, in dissimulating others that a person or a thing does not really "have it" -- to the industrial revolution, in which the dominant simulacrum is the product, the series, which can be propagated on an endless production line; and finally to current times, in which the dominant simulacrum is the model, which by its nature already stands for endless reproducibility, and is itself already reproduced.
Some examples Baudrillard brings up of the simulacrum of the model are: 1) the development of nuclear weapons as deterrents—useful only in the hyperreal sense, a reference with no real referent, since they are always meant to be reproducible but are never intended to be used—2) the (former) Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, which replaced a New York of constantly competing, distinct heights with a singular model of the ultimate New York building: already doubled, already reproduced, itself a reproduction, a singular model for all conceivable development, and 3) a menage-a-trois with identical twins where the fantasy comprises having perfection reproduced in front of your eyes, though the reality behind this reproduction is nil and impossible to comprehend otherwise, since the twins are still just people. The very act of perceiving these, Baudrillard insists, is in the tactile sense, since we already assume the reproducibility of everything, since it is not the reality of these simulations that we imagine (in fact, we no longer "imagine" in the same sense as before; both the imagined and the real are equally hyperreal, equally both reproducible and already reproductions themselves), but the reproducibility thereof. We do not imagine them reproduced for us, since the original image is itself a reproduction—rather, we perceive the model, the simulation.
The end of history and meaning
- The end of history is, alas, also the end of the dustbins of history. There are no longer any dustbins for disposing of old ideologies, old regimes, old values. Where are we going to throw Marxism, which actually invented the dustbins of history? (Yet there is some justice here since the very people who invented them have fallen in.) Conclusion: if there are no more dustbins of history, this is because History itself has become a dustbin. It has become its own dustbin, just as the planet itself is becoming its own dustbin.
By Henry Makow
I was taught Communism was "public ownership" and the overthrow of capitalist tyranny, not how certain capitalists stole the wealth of other capitalists while pretending to champion the working class. This indeed is "Magick" a.k.a. deception, propaganda, education, the "news."
You would NOT expect to hear, "'Make-believe.'"
"Make-believe?" Who is this tyrant? Walt Disney?
Yet in the First Protocol of the " Protocols of the Elders of Zion," the author says three times, Our Countersign is "Force and Make-believe."
"Make-believe" is the Illuminati's "Magick." Magick is simply deceit or lying which is pretty easy to do when you own the mass media and educators.
I finally noticed this when I read "The Truth About the Slump" (1931) by A.N. Field. The Bolshevik Revolution was portrayed as an egalitarian revolt. In fact, the Illuminati Jewish bankers financed it to confiscate Russian industry. (pp.62-72)
German Secret Service documents instructed the Bolsheviks to "destroy the Russian capitalists as far as you please, but it would by no means be possible to permit the destruction of Russian enterprises."
Some people think the central bankers are instituting their world dictatorship on behalf of the Jewish people. This is understandable since the same bankers (Rothschild, Schiff, Warburgs etc.) were the official leaders of the Jewish community.
Communism and Zionism are just "incidents in a far reaching plan" to create a "world government" dictatorship dedicated to Lucifer run by the central bankers.
In order to build the "New" world order, they need to destroy the old. "Magick" refers to the specious excuses they use.