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  1. says

    “A text is not a line of words releasing a single ‘theological’ meaning (the ‘message’ of the Author-God), but a multi-dimensional space in which a variety of writings, none of them original, blend and clash.”
    –Roland Barthes, “The Death of the Author,” (1967)

    There is no genuinely original statement. What artists and writers create is only given meaning by placing it in the context of many other works of art past and present. We just recontextualize readymade objects and give them new and multiple layers of meaning. Appropriation and simulation became our art.

    So what happens now that postmodernism is over 40 years old, and like in this video, we start appropriating our appropriations and simulating our simulations? Do our layers of meaning become evermore rich and complex? Or do we wake up one night in a cold sweat and realize our lives are becoming more and more hollow? Or can it go both ways?

    And as Baudrillard has noted, the media has followed the same pattern. There’s no news, just the simulation of news – something that applies to NPR as much as Fox News. (Sorry…) In a way, we’re all already cyborgs, a walking set of programmed cultural artifacts that simulate being humans. So aren’t we a little like those old melotrons playing their loops, electro-mechanical Don Quixotes in search of the real?

    Thanks for the interesting video.