I’ve begun to dive deeper into the concept of modernity and the characteristic shifts in perception and thought that took place during this period. Even though I’ve only begun my journey there are many interesting thoughts that begin to stir. One aspect I feel runs through modernity is an ever increasing abstraction of the world. Things that were previously set, or rather locked, in a firm context lost their meaning (and here we find some of Weber’s thoughts on Entzauberung) and became general, abstract concepts instead. This is perhaps extra evident when looking at the shift from a Judeo-Christian geocentric view of the cosmos (drawing very much on characters from the classical world such as Aristotle and Ptolemy) to a heliocentric one and also the new-found concept of the history of the universe being far older than previously thought. To some extent this can be seen as first having a furnished room where everything has it’s place for a reason (no real need for abstraction, the objects exists only here and in this context) to having a room without beginning or end and no deeper reason behind the positioning of the furniture.
I’m quite interested in looking at this abstraction of modernity from the point-of-view of Baudrillard’s Simulacra. How has culture and media changed due to this expanding abstraction? And how does video games come into all of this? Let me point out that I have not yet read Simulacra – it’s on the list though.
Just some thoughts – do with them whatever you like.