The Crying Of Lot 49 Analysis

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The Simulation of a Capitalist Society: The Crying of Lot 49

In Jean Baudrillard’s, Simulacra and Simulations he discusses how symbols and signs constitute our reality and argues that our society has lost all connections to anything meaningful and real through the proliferation of signs and how that consequently leads our existence towards a simulation of reality. Sixteen years before the publication of Simulacra and Simulation, Thomas Pynchon’s 1966 novel, The Crying of Lot 49 parodies this idea of finding meaning in signs and symbols through his main character, Oedipa Maas. What Pynchon’s book is originally concerned with is how reality had become entirely based on illusion and subjectivity rather than any sort of substance; much like what Baudrillard argues in Simulacra and Simulations, only Baudrillard goes to further lengths in explaining how finding substance in symbols becomes a convoluted reality. I will argue that Pynchon’s novel shows us the convoluted world of signs and symbols and how it leads the protagonist into a conspiracy web of infinite meaningless signs.
Oedipa M...
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