Does This Guy Look Radical or What?


I finished my first Slavoj Zizek book the other day, First as Tragedy, then as Farce, and now I need to read seven other books to figure out what he was talking about (I guess, like most other humans, I need to brush up on my Lacanian and Kantian semiotics) but though his ideas are radical, he's also pretty fun to read in the brief moments you understand him (he's been called "the Elvis of cultural theory") and his main point is that the world global system is not actually capitalism, because every time it melts down, tons of state money is poured into it, and the title indicates how unified we are in this-- he illustrates that the language of post 9/11 (the tragedy) when the nation was unified against terrorism is similar to the language used when the nation bailed out the banks (the farce)-- George Bush, Obama, and corporate America were all on-board-- and we are quicker to galvanize in order to save Wall Street than we are to confront dire environmental and poverty problems . . . and that to combat this attitude there needs to be a radical and violent shift left, because the left is not the left, and the "dictatorship of the proletariat" is not even a threat, and he sees this as true democracy, but realizes that no democracy allows power to the people until they are divided into the liberal and hedonistic intellectuals, the fundamentalist populists, and the outcasts (who resort to religion and gangs and such) and once these people are at odds with one another and have no common space to meet and cooperate, then the government and corporations and rulers-- the hegemony, he calls it-- can get down to business without much conflict from the populous . . . or that's what I got from it.

3 comments:

zoltan said...

If you like obscure eastern European authors, read "War With the Newts" by Karel Capek. There's an accent that looks like a v over the C but I can't figure out how to do that on blogger.

Al DePantsdowno said...

I like peanut M&Ms.

Greasetruck said...

same with zizek, but i didn't even try . . .

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