Simulacrum is an idea, a copy with no original, physically created and is an imitation of something in reality. We were discussing the difference between this and a raw creation or INVENTION. It’s hard to understand where you draw the line because the only difference is that a simulacra is an imitation of something already in reality – hence a copy without an original, because the imitative portion of a simulacra is not present in the original. But, how many people remember a time in their life when someone showed you a new product or invention and all you could think was, “Okay, thats cool I guess! But WHY DO YOU NEED THAT?” I think people over look this thought with most all inventions. But the thought comes when you realize that we already have a method or means of completing that task, entertaining oneself or storing things which could work just fine without the new invention. All the “labor-saving-devices” which have been invented…. escalators (imitation of stairs – or the act of going up stairs), washing machines and more…. are the simulcra or simulation because we already had a way of doing that activity, yet we imitated it with a machine or moving stairs ?
What about the typically huge, expensively rich and unique looking mansions and castles of historic European churches and kings. Their places of residence were made as an imitation of a normal house at that time – though after built it was really in reality. Kings and queens did this just so their power and wealth could be displayed. But the idea and sight of these huge homes could be a simulcra?
“America is disneyland” in the context of disney land being a simulation of childhood. I think this means America is also a simulation, but that of a rising middle class. People migrate to and from America all the time, for the chance of a better life. Those coming are told they have freedoms and work as much as they can until they possibly reach an accumulation of wealth higher than their life in the previous country. Others end up in a never ending cycle of their economic status and therefore do the opposite; they leave America in search for something better. This is how America is a simulation of a rising middle class; theoretically the structure of it’s government and guaranteed rights make it possible for people to change or better the economic status, but in reality this is nowhere in sight or possibilities to most citizens.
After reading and discussing Jean Baudrillard’s crazyness “Simulacra and Simulation” I have come to a realization that I think he was trying to make.
It is a natural and unavoidable human tendency to to lean towards simulations instead of reality. We love to day dream and create newer better or fiction-based/abstracts of possibilities. Instead of ONLY seeing, viewing, and understanding the environment around us – humans like to take it a step further. We live to “make our own version of reality” – and hope it is better than before. Humans take what is already here and constantly try to create/invent/imagine/model/predict — all of these are simulacra to the original sight that gave you the idea…….