Obama’s Simulacra

A poster for Barack Obama’s speech in Berlin yesterday. But was
there substance beneath this well-honed visual styling?
Standing amidst a crowd of 200,000 Berliners yesterday, writes CR contributor Daniel West, Barack Obama was Jean Baudrillard’s messiah. As his sermon boomed over the Tiergarten, our presence was explained: this was a pilgrimage to postmodernism, not politics. We came to snatch a tiptoe glimpse of the man who has dominated our inboxes, TVs and newspapers. A man whose logos and slogans and soundbites have so comprehensively flooded our collective consciousness. We came to witness reality. But Obama’s performance was not a speech, it was a simulacrum…

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