The Image: A Guide to Pseudo Events in America

“The Image: A Guide to Pseudo Events in America”


Daniel Boorstin 

"[We have] used our wealth, our literacy, our technology, and our progress, to create the thicket of unreality which stands between us and the facts of life... We want to believe these illusions because we suffer from extravagant expectations... When we pick up the newspaper at breakfast, we expect - we even demand - that it bring us momentous events since the night before...We expect our two-week vacations to be romantic, exotic, cheap, and effortless.  We expect anything and everything.  We expect the contradictory and the impossible.  We expect compact cars which are spacious; luxurious cars which are economical.  We expect to be rich and charitable, powerful and merciful, active and reflective, kind and competitive.  We expect to be inspired by mediocre appeals for excellence, to be made literate by illiterate appeals for literacy, to "go to the church of our choice" and yet feel its guiding power over us, to revere God and to be God.  Never have people been more the masters of their environment.  Yet never has a people felt more deceived and disappointed.  For never has a people expected so much more than the world could offer” (3-4).