Baudrillard views can sometimes be controversial.
Baudrillard believes a simulated robbery is more dangerous than the real thing. This is because a real bank robbery justifies having a criminal justice system but a simulated robbery there are no rules and everyone perceives the simulation to different realities. Consequently if we end up in a world where the simulation is as real as the real then the reality falls apart.
Archaeologist Walks into a Cave
Lascaux cave in France are famous for their Paleolithic paintings but the audience does not see the original. What we get to see are the paintings in the Lascaux cave 2. Baudrillard suggests that the danger of simulating something so real is that we do not know if it is real or not and therefore lose our understanding of the real thing. We start believing the simulation and forget there is an original. This hyper-reality can become dangerous if the simulation replaces the real.
We Will Take a Trip to a Theme Park
Baudrillard believes Disneyland portrays the ‘American Dream.’ He considers that inside Disneyland is the real America because it shows a perfect world and outside is the ‘unreal’ America with family break ups, drug use etc. There is no authentic or real America anymore but only a hyper-reality.
Three Orders of Simulacra
First order: the sign directly represents or reflects a real item.
Second order: the sign is a corruption of reality.
Third order: the sign no longer represents any meaningful reality.
The Gulf War Did Not Take Place (1991)
Another controversial view of Baudrillard. He believed that the Gulf War did not take place because it was conducted using technologies eg drones and therefore the war was clinically constructed and this ‘virtual war’ replaced the ‘total war.’
The Matrix (1999)
This film takes inspiration for Jean Baudrillards ‘Simulacra and Simulation’
Even though realities are being taken over by simulations humans still have the capacity to decide and understand what is real and not. Simulations have a place in education, training and overcoming phobias so even though Baudrillard believes simulations can be dangerous overtaking the reality they can be used for positive experiences as well.