The Society Of The Spectacle

Author: Guy Debord

Year: 1967

...The Society of the Spectacle, analyzes the phenomena of alienation and argues that alienation’s root cause is located within the economic, political, and cultural spheres of modern society. While previous periods of capitalist development saw the hyper-exploitation of workers, the period of capitalism after WWII saw an improvement in labor conditions for greater numbers of workers in society. However, for Debord, this improvement in work conditions did not translate to the disappearance of alienated labor. Rather, alienation moved from the workplace to the marketplace and is now defined by the fact that the whole of an individual’s life is structured according to the needs of the production and accumulation of capital. This means that everyday life under capitalist society is organized and structured according to the temporal rhythms and cycles of production and consumption; a social order whose chief consequence is that people no longer find the time to live a life for themselves. (SuperSummary)