Jean Baudrillard

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Baudrillard, Jean,

1929–2007, French social theorist and cultural critic. Trained as a sociologist, he taught at the Univ. of Paris X, Nanterre, from 1966 to 1987 and was a prolific writer. Influenced by MarxismMarxism,
economic and political philosophy named for Karl Marx. It is also known as scientific (as opposed to utopian) socialism. Marxism has had a profound impact on contemporary culture; modern communism is based on it, and most modern socialist theories derive from it (see
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, Roland BarthesBarthes, Roland
, 1915–80, French critic. Barthes was one of the founding figures in the theoretical movement centered around the journal Tel Quel. In his earlier works, such as Writing Degree Zero (tr. 1953) and Mythologies (1957, tr.
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, Thorstein VeblenVeblen, Thorstein
, 1857–1929, American economist and social critic, b. Cato Township, Wis. Of Norwegian parentage, he spent his first 17 years in Norwegian-American farm communities. After studying at Carleton College and at Johns Hopkins, Yale (where he received a Ph.D.
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, Marshall McLuhanMcLuhan, Marshall
(Herbert Marshall McLuhan), 1911–80, Canadian communications theorist and educator, b. Edmonton, Alta. He taught at the Univ. of Toronto (1946–80) and at other institutions of higher education in Canada and the United States.
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, and others, he began as a critic of the consumer society, arguing in such works as The System of Objects (1968, tr. 1996), The Mirror of Production (1973), and Symbolic Exchange and Death (1976, tr. 1993) that the individual acquires meaning though objects, which are valued for their symbolic cultural significance (rather than their usefulness or monetary worth) and the world is marked the implosion of economics, politics, art, sexuality, and spheres of life, causing them to intermingle and interrelate in a confused, uncontrolled manner. Baudrillard subsequently developed a theory of media-saturated, late-capitalist technological consumer societies that saw them as characterized by simulation and hyperreality, in which the "real world" has been supplanted by artificially intensified substitutions for it and individuals are overwhelmed by the power of hyperreal objects. These ideas were developed in such works as Simulation and Simulacra (1981, tr. 1994), and Fatal Strategies (1983, tr. 1990). His later works reject critique in favor of a more aphoristic—at times, oracular—philosophical approach that is often intentionally provocative in its discussion of how appearance and illusion replace reality and truth in contemporary society. Thus The Gulf War Did Not Take Place (1991, tr. 1995) argues that the Persian Gulf War was more a media spectacle than a genuine war and in The Perfect Crime (1995, tr. 1996) he plays detective and investigates the "murder" of reality.


See selected writings ed. by M. Poster (2d ed. 2001); studies by D. Kellner (1989, 1990) and as ed. (1994), B. Turner (1993), N. Zurbrugg, ed. (1997), R. Butler (1999), and P. Hegarty (2004).

Baudrillard, Jean

(1929-) French social theorist who, in works such as La Société de consommation (1970) and Simulations (1983), has been influential in POSTMODERNISM. Baudrillard draws particularly on SEMIOLOGY to argue that modern-day consumption in particular entails the ‘active manipulation of SIGNS’, so that in modern society the production of the sign and the commodity have come together to produce the commodity-sign. An endless reduplication of signs, images and SIMULATIONS, launched through the media and elsewhere, in the end effaces all distinction between image and reality. The overproduction of such signs, images and simulations has the effect of producing a ‘loss of stable meaning’, which is advanced as a characteristic of POSTMODERNITY. See also HYPERREALITY.
References in periodicals archive ?
Jean Baudrillard, La ilusion y la desilusion esteticas, Monte Avila, Caracas, 1998, pp.
Thorstein Veblen, The Theory of the Leisure Class (New York, 1967); Jean Baudrillard, The System of Objects (New York, 1996); Jean Baudrillard, For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign (St.
The Truth About Truth, featuring selections from more than 30 authors, including Umberto Eco, Michel Foucault, Jean Baudrillard, Jacques Derrida, Richard Rorty, bell hooks, and Vaclav Havel, suggests the range of interests and various approaches of postmodernism.
Citing resistance as the salient feature that separates humans from other animals and makes life worth living, Beitchman tours the minds of playwrights, philosophers, and authorsufrom Shakespeare (King John) to Jean Baudrillard (9/11), ultimately confirming the inevitability of resistance in the context of the human conditionuborn to die, to endure/cause suffering, and helpless as to the situation we are born into.
Telesthesia is written as a work of 'low theory', the term Wark uses for the experimental, interventionist style of authors like Guy Debord and Jean Baudrillard.
They draw heavily on Jean Baudrillard theories of signs, paying close attention to changing representations of time, space and speed in corporate advertising and how these support neoliberal visions of worker flexibility, accumulation of wealth and production processes.
Entre sus teoricos, el movimiento de descrecimiento cuenta con el Club de Roma, Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen, y filosofos e historiadores como Jean Baudrillard, Andre Gorz, Ivan Illich y el economista contemporaneo, Serge Laotuche.
En un esplendido libro, La transparencia del mal, Jean Baudrillard abre su reflexion con una frase tan contundente como precisa.
Segun Jean Baudrillard, "uno no es mas que el extra de la escenificacion publicitaria del mundo circulante.
In an almost violent dissent from the views expressed by Bush and Rather, French writer Jean Baudrillard, while acknowledging that the attack on the World Trade Center was "immoral," nevertheless sees it as "a symbolic act of defiance .
Another example of an entry that suggests Utopian thoughts, is the one dedicated to Jean Baudrillard America (1986).
It draws upon, and criticizes, arguments such as those offered by Fredric Jameson, Jean-Francois Lyotard, and Jean Baudrillard that suggest that, for us, the sublime is experienced largely through our incapacity to represent the vast networks of global capital and techno-scientific culture.