The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-events in America - Chapter 6 - Section I and II Summary & Analysis

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In chapter six, Boorstin suggests that the greatest challenge Americans are now dealing with is illusion. He continues that we tend consider our problems as existing outside of America.

In section I, Boorstin asserts that America has experienced a move from "ideals to images". He suggests that part of the difficulty in foreign relations is that other countries are exposed to a flood of images that are disconnected from any sense of ideals. Boorstin states, "I suspect we suffer abroad simply because people know America through images. While our enemies profit from the fact that they are known only, or primarily, through their ideals. That is, through their professed goals of perfection."

Boorstin continues that it is not a question of what the images portray, it is more the fact that we are communicating with images at all that is the problem. He suggests that America return to its ideals and cease communicating with the rest of the world in image.

In section II, Boorstin asserts that one of the greatest challenges for America in returning to ideals is the fascination with "prestige". Prestige essentially means that people have accepted and bought into the image that we are trying to uphold. Boorstin states that this approach, like other pseudo-events distracts from lived and felt experience and realities and thus draws negative criticism from the world community. He warns that America has spent too much time attempting to "perfect our image rather than ourselves".

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