Simulacra and Simulation – Jean Baudrillard
In “Simulacra and Simulations”, Baudrillard assumes the proliferation of images in advanced capitalism, with the expansion of commodities and the relentless advance of technologies of visualization and simulation.
In the essay, Baudrillard describes a movement from “representation” (of something real) to “simulation” (with no secure reference to reality). This movement from representation to simulation changes the relation between sign and referent, so that we lose the connection, once presumed to exist, between sign or image and the reality to which both were thought to refer. To develop this argument Baudrillard asks us to think about situations where the simulating sign or image usurps the priority of the reality it is supposed to “serve”.
Henceforth, it is the map that precedes the territory – precession of simulacra – it is the map that engenders the territory and if we were to revive the fable today, it would be the territory whose shreds are slowly rotting across the map