Well, as usual, I take objection to about half of the claims that the author makes. In this instance, the subject of *admiration* is Harvey. I don't know if it is a function of the time this particular piece was written in, but his ideas seem oddly out of place. I guess I just don't have an issue with society and these authors, being social critics, do. So here goes my critic of the critic:
On page 289, Harvey claims, "Insofar as identity is increasingly dependent upon images, this means that the serial and recursive replications of identities (individual, corporate, institutional, and political) becomes a very real possibility and problem." I understand how this could be a problem for a car maker. Let's say someone takes the Mercedes logo off of a Mercedes and throws it onto a Honda. That might confuse some people and tarnish Mercedes' image in their minds. But to the extent that someone can replicate my individual identity is ludicrous. No one out there can be as funny, good looking, and charming as I am. Not to mention I don't think I could identify myself through "images". Mass production can make the extraordinary seem mundane; reproduction of images cannot steal one's self identity.
Onto the next topic of today's discourse, "the de-linking of the financial system from active production and from any material monetary base calls into question the reliability of the base mechanism whereby value is supposed to be represented." (299) The financial crisis of the 80s coupled with Japan's rise of economic power prompted many to speculate the end of US economic dominance and a fear of economic disaster. As we now know, the Japanese real estate bubble burst in the early 90s and the advent of the internet sent the American economy into uncharted heights. The American dollar is still the currency of the world and it derives its value from the very fact that other people want to hold it. It is linked to the success and stability of the American government and economy. It symbolizes everything America stands for in some respects. There must be some value in symbolizing a country, no?
Finally, "Place identityâ€¦ becomes an important issue because everyone occupies a space of individuationâ€¦ If no one 'knows their place' in the shifting collage world, then how can a secure social order be fashioned or sustained?"(302) I think Harvey short changes us by insinuating that we can only fit into one identity. The fact of the matter is no one fits into one "place", but into a multitude of places. I am American, Italian, Croatian, a Yankee Fan, a Pomona Student, a music fan, an entrepreneur, and a student to name a few. My identity is a collage and I have no need to limit the number of identities I place on myself.