View current page
...more recent posts
Rest in Peace, Jean Baudrillard. Without you the art world since 1982 or so would have lost all meaning and purpose. Let the inevitable hyperrealization of your life and work begin.
text buffer from wikischmedia:
Much of Baudrillard's notoriety as an academic and political commentator comes from his deliberately provocative claim in 1991 that the first Gulf War 'did not take place.' His argument — which sparked heavy criticism from the likes of Chris Norris ... who perceived, in Baudrillard, a denial of empirical events — described the war as the inverse of the Clausewitzian formula: not 'the continuation of politics by other means', but 'the continuation of the absence of politics by other means.' According to Baudrillard, Saddam Hussein was not fighting the Allied Forces, but using the lives of his troops as a form of sacrifice to preserve his power (p. 72 in the 2004 edition); and neither were the Allied Forces fighting Saddam, they were merely dropping 10,000 tonnes of bombs a day as if to prove to themselves there was an enemy to fight (p. 61). So too were the Western media complicit, presenting the war in 'real time' and recycling images of war to propagate the notion that the two enemies were in actual conflict. But, Baudrillard followed, this was not the case: Saddam did not use what military capacity he had (his air force); nor was his power eventually weakened (as he managed to put down the insurgency against him after the war ended). And so, Baudrillard concluded, little politically changed in Iraq: the enemy was not defeated, the victors were not victorious. Ergo, there was no war: the Gulf War did not take place.