Not long ago, two friends Jean Baudrillard and Enrique Valiente Noailles the one having come from Buenos Aires, the other from nowhere, met in Paris. They had a long discussion without any precise aim. It was, rather, a way of rubbing up against metaphysics without risk of contagion. They called it Exiles from Dialogue as a mirrored homage to Bertolt Brecht and shortly afterwards they parted company and went their separate ways. In this remarkable new book based on this gnomic meeting, Baudrillard and Noailles range over the entirety of philosophy and thought underpinning Baudrillards unique work, from In the Shadow of the Silent Majorities (1983) to his recent writings on 9/11. Philosophically, the book takes in its breadth Heraclitus to Wittgenstein by way of Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Hegel, Kierkegaard and Nietzche. Its literary sources are diverse: Gracian and Saul Bellow, Hlderlin and Stanislaw Lec; and the theories of Fukuyama, Barthes and Kristeva are weighed, considered and analysed.
With his usual incandescent brilliance, Baudrillard discusses the central themes of his writing: thought as (non-prophetic) anticipation; tragic acceptance of the world; the disappearance of the world into simulation; the death of the social (and with it the Left). Vitally, Baudrillard corrects some of the misconceptions that plague his work (about his fatal strategies, for example), qualifies some of his bolder pronouncements (notably softening his position on the question of the virtual) and pushes other lines of thinking further than ever before.
Razor-sharp, volatile and capacious, this book will be essential reading for students and scholars of Baudrillard and those interested in the theories and philosophies that currently abound and rebound in the social sciences and humanities.show more