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Hard Rock and Casino

            In his journal article, "Between a Hard Rock and Postmodernism: Opening the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino," Kurt Borchard uses his experiences from one night in Las Vegas in conjunction with research he has done to make comments on society. One of the ideas that Borchard comments on is the commodification of the postmodern era. The concept that "real" media is becoming unreal is also discussed in his ethnography. Borchard also talks about the ephemeral nature of the postmodern world. Acting as a participant observer, Kurt Borchard conducts his ethnography in an attempt to show how a portion of society is able to show the trends of a complete society. .
             One characteristic of society that Borchard comments on is the unreal reality of the media. He tells of his wait outside of the Hotel to be let into the concert that marks its grand opening. From the long line of people, James, a man who had come not dressed for the weather but to fit the current trends, is picked to enter the concert. Borchard later finds out that MTV is taping the concert and only wants a specific type of people to act as concertgoers. He discusses the fact that people are basing their lives on the "real" images that they see in the media, images that have no basis in reality. This hyperstimulation is a characteristic of the postmodern society, "a double counterreflection in which life simulates the simulated concerns of the media." (6) Borchard's comments on the fact that "the mediation of an event through television often comes to be confused with the actual event itself." (11) People are no longer able to easily distinguish the difference between reality and media's dictate of reality. .
             Borchard, in his ethnography conducted at the grand opening of the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, makes connections between the characteristics of that event and the characteristics of society as a whole. He comments on the massive amounts of commodification.

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