Sunday, November 14, 2010

What is real?

In Baudrillard’s Simulacra and Simulations, he presents the concept that map is not territory, that "it is the real, and not the map, whose vestiges subsist here and there, in the deserts which are no longer those of the Empire, but our own" (145). He asserts that the world we live in has essentially been replaced by a copy of its former self; when both the real and the representation cease to exist, they leave only the hyperreal in their place. The idea of hyperreality is seamlessly integrated into The Matrix, which portrays a false world created only by perception. When Neo awakens into the real reality the "construct" Morpheus says "welcome to the desert of the real." Neo's appearance is now "residual self-image, the mental projection of [his] digital self." The version of hyperreality feels like a dream, providing artificial stimulation and creating an ideal place to detach from consciousness. It asks: what is real? And is what is real even still real?

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