A conversation . . .
In societies where modern conditions of production prevail, all of life presents itself as an immense accumulation of spectacles. Everything that was directly lived has moved away into a representation. The images detached from every aspect of life fuse in a common stream in which the unity of this life can no longer be reestablished. Reality considered partially unfolds, in its own general unity, as a pseudo-world apart, an object of mere contemplation. The specialization of images of the world is completed in the world of the autonomous image, where the liar has lied to himself. The spectacle in general, as the concrete inversion of life, is the autonomous movement of the non-living.
Someday, in the distant future, our grandchildren’s grandchildren will develop a new equivalent of our classrooms. They will spend many hours in front of boxes with fires glowing within. May they have the wisdom to know the difference between light and knowledge.
When you don’t know how to connect, when connection frightens you so much, I suppose this simulation is better than nothing. Isn’t it better to watch nature programs than to never see nature at all? We’re substituting imaginary experiences with the images of things for experiences with the things themselves, having already substituted the experience of things for the possibility of relationship with other beings.
Through the Thou a person becomes I. The world is not comprehensible, but it is embraceable: through the embracing of one of its beings.
Television knows no night. It is perpetual day. TV embodies our fear of the dark, of night, of the other side of things.