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By Jean Baudrillard

Jean Baudrillard is without doubt one of the so much celebrated and such a lot debatable of up to date social theorists. This significant paintings, showing in English for the 1st time, occupies a valuable position within the rethinking of the arts and social sciences round the proposal of postmodernism. It leads the reader on a thrilling journey encompassing the top of Marxism, the attraction of style, symbolism approximately intercourse and the physique, and the relatives among financial trade and demise. most importantly, the e-book represents Baudrillard's fullest elaboration of the concept that of the 3 orders of the simulacra, defining the old passage from creation to replica to simulation. A vintage in its box, Symbolic Exc

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Extra info for Symbolic Exchange and Death (Published in association with Theory, Culture & Society)

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The principle of reversibility (the counter-gift) must be imposed against all the economistic, psycholo- Page 2 gistic and structuralist interpretations for which Mauss paved the way. The Saussure of the Anagrams must be set against Saussurian linguistics, against even his own restricted hypotheses concerning the anagram. The Freud of the death drive must be pitched against every previous psychoanalytic edifice, and even against Freud's version of the death drive. At the price of paradox and theoretical violence, we witness that the three hypotheses describe, in their own respective fields (but this propriety is precisely what the general form of the symbolic annihilates), a functional principle sovereignly outside and antagonistic to our economic 'reality principle'.

To say that the sphere of material production and that of signs exchange their respective contents is still too wide of the mark: they literally disappear as such and lose their specificity along with their determinacy, to the benefit of a form of value, of a much more general assemblage, where designation and production are annihilated. The 'political economy of the sign' was also consequent upon an extension of the commodity law of value and its confirmation at the level of signs, whereas the structural configuration of value simply and simultaneously puts an end to the regimes of production, political economy, representation and signs.

Xxvii). Is it at least possible to find an even match to oppose third-order simulacra? Is there a theory or a practice which is subversive because it is more aleatory than the system itself, an indeterminate subversion which would be to the order of the code what the revolution was to the order of political economy? Can we fight DNA? Certainly not by means of the class struggle. Perhaps simulacra of a higher logical (or illogical)order could be invented: beyond the current third order, beyond determinacy and indeterminacy.

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