…Guy Debord / La Société du Spectacle(68)…

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216

  • Completely opposite to the project outlined in the Feuerbach Theses (the realization of philosophy in praxis, thereby transcending the dichotomy of idealism and materialism), le spectacle preserves both materialism and idealism as unreconciled practices, and asserts them both as the pseudo-reality of its universe. The reflective, contemplative side of old-fashioned materialism, which thinks of the world as appearance and not as activity – and which, in the end, creates an abstract way of perceiving physical matter – is fully-accomplished and perfected in the images of le spectacle, where, inevitably, physical objects dominate our life in society. And, on the other hand, the  d r e a m e d   a c t i v i t y  of idealism  is just as fully-accomplished and perfected in the performances of le spectacle, which manifest – through the technological mediation of  signs and signals – a physicalization of  things that are ideal and abstract.

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This, precisely, is the insanity that threatens us: the simultaneous but un-coordinated and un-reconciled presentation of

  • the assertion that the world is objects – and the insinuation that fulfillment,  happiness and a complete understanding of the world are to be found in objects –

and

  • the apparently convincing acting out of ideology: which is always a complicated mask for prejudice and oppression, and never anything to do with – or reconcilable with – the above…
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