McLUHAN IN MANHATTAN

“The tactic of the terrorist model is to provoke a surplus of reality and to make the whole system collapse under it.” — Jean Baudrillard, The Spirit of Terrorism (2002).   ∆   Baudrillard’s work is coolly psychedelic, giving us the same sense of dizzying replication that we love in doppelgänger stories and much science fiction. […]

ENTER THE PSEUDO-GANG

Dissimulation has been at the heart of the terrorist tactic from the beginning. If you terrorise people, you will only solidify the political resistance against your aims — making it impossible for elected officials to entertain your demands. Terrorism, therefore, is not an effective tool, and terrorists rarely realise their aims. It is only effective […]

BAUDRILLARD IN BRABANT

THE MURDEROUS CAPACITY OF IMAGES In Simulacra and Simulation Baudrillard was announcing, not predicting, the ‘death of the real’. He ironically reveres Disneyland, which he says ‘is presented as imaginary in order to make us believe that the rest is real, when in fact all of Los Angeles and the America surrounding it are no […]

IN BOCCA LUPO

I’m sitting outside the Ritzy cinema in Brixton, one of the few places in London I enjoy. I lived here in the eighties, when the immigrant population was still predominantly Caribbean and Portuguese. Forty years on, I’m waiting for my daughter, all grown up and successful now. She slept at her boyfriend’s last night, and […]