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  • Introduction: From the Notion of Spectacle to Spectacle 2.0: The Dialectic of Capitalist Mediations

    Marco Briziarelli, Emiliana Armano

    Chapter from the book: Briziarelli M. & Armano E. 2017. The Spectacle 2.0: Reading Debord in the Context of Digital Capitalism.


    This chapter explains how Debord’s idea of the Spectacle vastly exceeds its superficial theatrical stage, to focus on a ‘deeper’ level implied in the original Debordian formulation; specifically the mediation logic of the sphere of production of value which today translates Spectacle into labour in its informational guise. Informed by this perspective, the authors revisit Debord’s notion of Spectacle and the intellectual context of his original work to critically inquire as to how knowledge workers produce, consume and reproduce value, via processes of subjectification as well as precarious forms of (digital) labour. The Spectacle’s ubiquity thus makes it into a real tangible environment, as the only way people ‘know’ reality. 

    Accordingly, the article explains the purpose of the book The Spectacle 2.0 is to empirically and theoretically explore Spectacle as applied to contemporary capitalist scenarios, and to consider it as the fundamental intersection of transformative social relations, especially in their informational, cognitive and digital forms. It thus aims to engage and test through different perspectives whether a revisited Spectacle – a Spectacle 2.0 – can function as a heuristic tool, a totalizing framework to understand late capitalism and the subjectivities inhabiting it, and as a revitalized Debordian concept able to capture the capability of capitalism to fluidly integrate most aspects of life.

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    How to cite this chapter
    Briziarelli M. & Armano E. 2017. Introduction: From the Notion of Spectacle to Spectacle 2.0: The Dialectic of Capitalist Mediations. In: Briziarelli M. & Armano E (eds.), The Spectacle 2.0. London: University of Westminster Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16997/book11.b

    This chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution + Noncommercial + NoDerivatives 4.0 license. Copyright is retained by the author(s)

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    Published on Dec. 12, 2017