"Wealth will increasingly be defined by our ability to go offline whenever we want." - Fernando Gros
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Blog // Thoughts
March 7, 2007

Jean Baudrillard

One of the greatest thinkers of our time, Jean Baudrillard, has passed away in his home in Paris after a long illness. Baudrillard was a sociologist, philsopher and cultural critic. But more than that, he was a talented wordsmith who mapped the world of ideas with creative and probing phrases and expressions. He understood and […]

One of the greatest thinkers of our time, Jean Baudrillard, has passed away in his home in Paris after a long illness. Baudrillard was a sociologist, philsopher and cultural critic. But more than that, he was a talented wordsmith who mapped the world of ideas with creative and probing phrases and expressions. He understood and made clear that both the author and the philosopher’s shared calling was and has always been, the art of intellectual seduction.

I first encountered his books in the early 90s, and they helped me struggle past the simplistic representations of postmodernity that were being passed on at theological college. I found his books to be readable, reasoned and revealing. Over the time the congruencies between his concepts and my insights became clearer and clearer.

Whilst his most commonly quoted work is probably either Simulacra and Simulation or The Gulf War Did Not Take Place, for me the most frutiful read was and continues to be The Consumer Society. Whilst I am not as big a fan of that book as I once was, it still remains a powerful and telling account of the social forces at work in late captialism and globalisation.

I’ve already commented on Baudrillard’s work here on this blog (Baudrillard Was Right, Christian Syncretism and 9/11 And The So-Called Death Of Postmodernity). But, really that is a poor return on the debt I owe. So, over the next few weeks, I plan to blog through each chapter of the book Passwords, which was Baudrillard’s own attempt at unravelling the key themes in his writing.

[tags] Jean Baudrillard, Passwords [/tags]

Responses
Paul 16 years ago

thanks Fernando, i will look forward to reading what you have to say. The great Baud is someone who i have thought about reading often but not been able to steel myself up sufficiently to do so… hopefully you will fan my curiousity into action 🙂

Fernando Gros 16 years ago

Update: I just received a somewhat meanspirted (given the circumstances) comment pointing out that the image used in this post was originally available through European Graduate School site. Whilst that was not where I originally found the image (which is now resident in a number of locations), I’m more than happy to credit the EGS and thank them for making resources available online. However, I won’t approve anonymous comments, especially one’s that make false and cowardly accusations.

Fernando Gros 16 years ago

Without doubt his work is worth the price of admission. I’ve heard folks complain about his writing style, but it just takes a little patience – it’s not a style suited to skim readers.

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