The killing of Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in Pretoria and the arrest, bail hearing and forthcoming trial for her murder of Oscar Leonard Carl Pistorius hold some valuable lessons about emotions.
While this is but a hearing to determine bail and there is so much we do not know, romantic love, emotional deception, emotional branding come together here.
Simulating emotions is not pretending
If Pistorius murdered Reeva Steenkamp he is engaged in a high stakes act of emotional deception. But let’s be clear about what this entails. He is not simply lying or dissimulating, rather he is simulating innocence and hurt indignation. There’s a big difference between dissimulation and simulation. Baudrillard puts it like this:
To dissimulate is to pretend not to have what one has. To simulate is to feign to have what one doesn’t have. One implies a presence, the other an absence. But it is more complicated…
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