Clockwork Orange And The Age Of Mechanical Reproduction Essay

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Clockwork Orange and the Age of Mechanical Reproduction       For Walter Benjamin, the defining characteristic of modernity was mass assembly and production of commodities, concomitant with this transformation of production is the destruction of tradition and the mode of experience which depends upon that tradition. While the destruction of tradition means the destruction of authenticity, of the originally, in that it also collapses the distance between art and the masses it makes possible the liberation which capitalism both obscures and opposes. While commodity fetishism represents the alienation away from use-value and towards exchange-value, leading to the assembly line construction of the same--as we see…show more content…
"The desire of the contemporary masses to bring things 'closer' spatially and humanlyis just as ardent as their bent toward overcoming the uniqueness of every reality by accepting its reproduction." The fact of this desire for the reproduction over and above the original is precisely what Horkheimer and Adorno believe is destroying culture, for contrary to Benjamin, Horkheimer and Adorno assert that any emancipatory possibilities are re-absorbed into capitalism, and fascism turns out to be the midget in the Chess-playing machine of capitalist oriented democracy. They set out, like Poe in his article "Maelzel's chess player," to show that capitalism has a hidden motor and it is none other than fascism. Benjamin's essay "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" provides us with an outline of the history of the work of art and the historical changes, which have led to the transformation of experience from Erfahrung to Erlebnis. It is only in the post-modern or so called post-industrial age that the concept of autonomy handed down to us from Kant, among others, begins to reveal it ideological nature. Benjamin's analysis of autonomous art not only destroys our notions of the wholistic work, but also dispels the illusion of the artist as transcendental creator. Let us

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