The Perfect Crime


Were it not for appearances, the world would be a perfect crime, that is, without a criminal, without a victim, and without a motive. And the truth would forever have withdrawn from it and its secret would never be revealed, for want of any clues [traces] being left behind. But the fact is that the crime is never perfect, for the world betrays itself by appearances, which are the clues to its non-existence, the traces of the continuity of the nothing. For nothingness itself — the continuity of the nothing — leaves traces. It is by this that the world betrays its secret. That is the way it allows itself to be sensed, while at the same time hiding away behind appearances…our destiny is the accomplishment of this crime, its inexorable unfolding, the continuity of the evil, the continuation of the nothing. We shall never experience the primal scene, but at every moment we experience its prolongation and its expiation. There is no end to this and the consequences are incalculable.


Jean Baudrillard





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