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Simulation and Social Theory
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Simulation and Social Theory

  • Sean Cubitt - Winchester School of Art, UK, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK


December 2000 | 192 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
This insightful book is the first to critically examine the ideas of some of the key thinkers of simulation. It addresses the work of Baudrillard, Debord, Virilio and Eco, clarifying their arguments by referring to the intellectual and social worlds each emerged from distilling what is important from their discussions. The book argues for a critical and selective use of the concept of simulation.

Like the idea of ideology, simulation is a political theory, but it has also become a deeply pessimistic theory of the end of history and the impossibility of positive change. Through a series of reflections on the meaning of theme parks, warfare and computer modelling, Sean Cubitt demonstrates the strengths and limitations of the simulation thesis.

 
Introduction
The Long Term  
 
PART ONE: THEORIES
 
Values, Signs and Subjects
 
Technology, Information and Reason
 
The Poetics of Pessimism
 
Making Sense of Simulation
 
PART TWO: CASES
 
Disney World Culture
 
War in the Persian Gulf
 
Working with Computers
 
Conclusion
 
Pessimism of the Intellect, Optimism of the Will

`Overall this is an excellent book which shouuld be of interest to any social scientist who wants to keep up with the general character of understanding in our iner-disciplinary field' - The Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation

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