THE SUBLIME OBJECT OF IDEOLOGY THE ESSENTIAL ZIZEK
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In this provocative and original work, Slavoj _i_ek takes a look at the question of human agency in a postmodern world. From the sinking of the Titanic to Hitchcock’s Rear Window, from the operas of Wagner to science fiction, from Alien to the Jewish Joke, the author’s acute analyses explore the ideological fantasies of wholeness and exclusion which make up human society. _i_ek takes issue with analysts of the postmodern condition from Habermas to Sloterdijk, showing that the idea of a ‘post-ideological’ world ignores the fact that ‘even if we do not take things seriously, we are still doing them’. Rejecting postmodernism’s unified world of surfaces, he traces a line of thought from Hegel to Althusser and Lacan, in which the human subject is split, divided by a deep antagonism which determines social reality and through which ideology operates. Linking key psychoanalytical and philosophical concepts to social phenomena such as totalitarianism and racism, the book explores the political significance of these fantasies of control. In so doing, The Sublime Object of Ideology represents a powerful contribution to a psychoanalytical theory of ideology, as well as offering persuasive interpretations of a number of contemporary cultural formations.
In some circles, a nod towards totalitarianism is enough to dismiss any critique of the status quo. Such is the insidiousness of the neo-liberal ideology, argues Slavoj Žižek. Did Somebody Say Totalitarianism? turns a specious rhetorical strategy on its head to identify a network of family resemblances between totalitarianism and modern liberal democracy. Žižek argues that totalitarianism is invariably defined in terms of four things: the Holocaust as the ultimate, diabolical evil; the Stalinist gulag as the alleged truth of the socialist revolutionary project; ethnic and religious fundamentalisms, which are to be fought through multiculturalist tolerance; and the deconstructionist idea that the ultimate root of totalitarianism is the ontological closure of thought. Žižek concludes that the devil lies not so much in the detail but in what enables the very designation totalitarian: the liberal-democratic consensus itself. From the Trade Paperback edition.
A high-energy philosophical manifesto on the concept and virtues of universal values addresses such topics as Heidegger's engagement with the Third Reich, the role of class struggles in global capitalism, and the legacy of Christianity against New Age spiritualism. Original.
Author : Slavoj Žižek
ISBN : 1859840558
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 42.79 MB
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Not so long ago, the term "ideology" was in considerable disrepute. Its use had become associated with a claim to know a truth beyond ideology, a radically unfashionable position. What then explains the sudden revival of interest in grappling with the questions that "ideology" poses to social and cultural theory, as well as to political practice? Mapping Ideology presents a comprehensive sampling of the most important contemporary writing on the subject. Slavoj Zizek's introductory essay surveys the development of the concept from Marx to the present. Terry Eagleton, Peter Dews and Seyla Benhabib assess the decisive contributions of Lukács and the Frankfurt School. A different tradition is revealed in an essay by the French post-structuralist Michel Pêcheux, while the study of ideology is exemplified in classic texts by Theodor Adorno, Jacques Lacan and Louis Althusser. An intersection of Gramscian and Althusserian motifs appears in a now famous debate over "the dominant ideology thesis," reprinted here. Pierre Bourdieu succinctly formulates his departure from this tradition in an interview with Eagleton. Further readings of the ideological are explored by Richard Rorty and Michèle Barrett. Finally Fredric Jameson supplies an authoritative statement of the nature and position of the ideological in late capitalist society. Mapping Ideology is an invaluable guide to what is now the most dynamic field of cultural theory.
Slavoj Zizek, a leading intellectual in the new social movements that are sweepingEastern Europe, provides a virtuoso reading of Jacques Lacan. Zizek inverts current pedagogicalstrategies to explain the difficult philosophical underpinnings of the French theoretician andpractician who revolutionized our view of psychoanalysis. He approaches Lacan through the motifs andworks of contemporary popular culture, from Hitchcock's Vertigo to Stephen King's Pet Sematary, fromMcCullough's An Indecent Obsession to Romero's Return of the Living Dead - a strategy of "lookingawry" that recalls the exhilarating and vital experience of Lacan.Zizek discovers fundamentalLacanian categories the triad Imaginary/Symbolic/Real, the object small a, the opposition of driveand desire, the split subject - at work in horror fiction, in detective thrillers, in romances, inthe mass media's perception of ecological crisis, and, above all, in Alfred Hitchcock's films. Theplayfulness of Zizek's text, however, is entirely different from that associated with thedeconstructive approach made famous by Derrida. By clarifying what Lacan is saying as well as whathe is not saying, Zizek is uniquely able to distinguish Lacan from the poststructuralists who sooften claim him.Slavoj Zizek is a Researcher in the Institute of Sociology at the University ofLjubljana, Yugoslavia. His work has been published in France and in Yugoslavia where, running as aproreform candidate, he narrowly missed being elected to the presidency of the republic ofSlovenia.