True/False | Simulation/Simulacra

Lately, I’ve been diving back into my philosophy text from undergrad days and re-exploring ideas that made little sense to me back then. I wouldn’t exactly say that the same ideas are understandable now but experience has led me to think much more critically. The most interesting aspect of what I’ve been reading has to do with this French philosopher named Jean Baudrillard and how he believes that meaning is derived from knowing what something is NOT. Basically, a dog is a dog because it’s not a cat. I know, simple right? But, what about other complex areas like, oh, I don’t know, art, or politics, or religion. All these things appear to be simulations so the world can make sense! Okay, fine, Baudrillard, Disneyland doesn’t exist!! Try telling my little cousins that. Yet, secretly, it’s true. Disneyland is an imagined place (or is it)? More to come…

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Author: Dorothy R. Santos

Dorothy R. Santos is a writer, editor, curator, and educator whose research areas and interests include new media and digital art, activism, artificial intelligence, networked culture, and biotechnology. Born and raised in San Francisco, California, she holds Bachelor’s degrees in Philosophy and Psychology from the University of San Francisco, and received her Master’s degree in Visual and Critical Studies at the California College of the Arts. She is currently the managing editor for Hyphen magazine. Her work appears in art21, Art Practical, Daily Serving, Rhizome, Hyperallergic, and Public Art Dialogue. She has lectured and spoken at the De Young museum, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Stanford University, School of Visual Arts, and more. Her essay “Materiality to Machines: Manufacturing the Organic and Hypotheses for Future Imaginings,” has been published to The Routledge Companion to Biology in Art and Architecture in 2016. She serves as executive staff for the Bay Area Society for Art & Activism, board member for the SOMArts Cultural Center, and teaches at the University of California, Santa Cruz in the Digital Art and New Media department.

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