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Mass Reproduction

Decent Essays
Mass Reproduction and Cultural Eradication

In the reading “The Work of Art in the Age of It’s Technological Reproducibility”, by W. Benjamin he expresses his point of view on the loss of the traditional aspect and “aura” of art that is seen within today’s society. He also speaks about the way that photography has become a device for the mass reproduction of images and has begun to eliminate this aspect of authenticity that places an image in a specific place and time. The person that is behind the camera forces people to see what he or she wants them to see. It changes the moral and traditional conventions that may have once been associated with an image. In his article he doesn’t completely reject this idea of reproduction he also expands on the idea that although authenticity is an issue, within film you are able to do what paintings cannot.
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Adorno and M. Horkheimer’s article, “The Culture Industry” they discuss the way culture has become commodified and changes the perception of the audience. For example in Hollywood films, many movies are given various titles but the overall production of the film seems to form a unified and repetitive outlook. We as the audience begin to lose the cultural aspect and meaning that is associated with these films. They argue that the commodification of culture has come to form an entirely new capitalist society that seems to focus on the domination of the medium rather than the nature of humanities cultural, social and moral values. Both of these articles draw on points of reproduction and its affect on society, but they also differ in the means of what is being created through this loss of tradition and aura. Benjamin talks about a new perception being formed through this loss whereas Adorno and Horkheimer emphasize that this loss of culture is not providing new perceptions of art through film and photography by the use of the camera, but instead is commodifying the aesthetic qualities that come to form an
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