Thursday, November 27, 2008

Slavoj Zizek is a Fascist

If I have ever said something positive about Slavoj Zizek, I take it back, and apologize profusely. His more recent work encouraging violence and fascism is simply deplorable, and the direction he has taken, even if it sometimes comments on theological ideas in interesting ways, is simply indefensible. See this essay of Adam Kirsch, a stunning expose.

3 comments:

  1. This really shouldn't be a surprise; he's an avowed Leninist in principle, if not in practice.

    To see just how dangerous he can be (heightened by just how fun he can be) check out his _On Belief_, especially the introduction. His Marxism-in-a-Christian-mode suggestion is disturbingly compatible with the misbelief of many in the church.

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  2. Well, I know it shouldn't be surprising, but I had always taken some of his more disturbing comments as dialectical pretensions. What I think now is he isn't fun at all- he is deadly serious. Anti-semitic, encouraging violent revolution, etc.

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  3. He's certainly not fun as a thinker, once you hear what he's actually saying. No doubts there. As a performer, however, he's very good. And worth learning from, so that we understand a possible tack those who are similarly-minded and politically-able may take in the future (and learn to unveil them for what they are, when most would see clowns, or as an attractive choice because of their entertainment value). What's done on campus in one generation often shapes and directs the politics of the next.

    In some ways he's the anti-Baudrillard. They say things that are similarly shocking, but, for all his protestations (and, perhaps likely, intentions), Baudrillard's work coalesced around a search for cultural and individual liberation from the icy dark future to which materialist thought leads (not materialist in terms of possessions; the other meaning; the central problem with B. is that he's doing it from a materialist POV, and he finds just how little can be done when that's all there is). In contrast, Zizek welcomes that barren icy land, where cartoons flash across the sky to amuse the frozen masses...

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