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Introduction - Desperately Seeking Authenticty: an Interdisciplinary Approach

Graulund, Rune (2010) Introduction - Desperately Seeking Authenticty: an Interdisciplinary Approach. In: Desperately Seeking Authenticty. University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, pp. 9-12. ISBN 978-87993761-0-0

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Abstract

Authenticity, we have been informed time and time again, should have died out long ago. Possibly with Walter Benjamin’s ‘The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction’ (1936), but certainly with postmodernism and digitalization, gene technology, plastic surgery and virtual reality; what was felt with some regret by Benjamin three quarters of a century ago has been lamented a thousand fold over the past couple of decades. As the twentieth century neared its close, great minds repeatedly informed us that instead of simply reproducing the real through reproduction, ‘the real’ was now fabricated from scratch. The real had become a creation rather than a reproduction, no longer dependent on the imitation of an authentic original, but capable of producing closed and selfreferential systems.