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The title is just the first of many startling asides, observations and insights that fill this guide to Hollywood on the Lacanian psychoanalyst’s couch. Zizek introduces the ideas of Jacques Lacan through the medium of American film, taking his examples from over 100 years of cinema, from Charlie Chaplin to The Matrix and referencing along the way such figures as Lenin and Hegel, Michel Foucault and Jesus Christ. Enjoy Your Symptom! is a thrilling guide to cinema and psychoanalysis from a thinker who is perhaps the last standing giant of cultural theory in the twenty-first century.
Slavoj Zizek is, without doubt, one of the most stimulating and vibrant thinkers of our time, and his idiosyncratic blend of Lacan and Hegel is always sparkling with insight and studded with amusing stories, anecdotes and jokes. In The Plague of Fantasies Zizek approaches another enormous subject with characteristic brio and provocativeness. The current epoch is plagued by fantasms: there is an ever intensifying antagonism between the process of ever greater abstraction of our lives—whether in the form of digitalization or market relations—and the deluge of pseudo-concrete images which surround us. Traditional critical thought would have sought to trace the roots of abstract notions in concrete social reality; but today, the correct procedure is the inverse—from pseudo-concrete imagery to the abstract process which structures our lives. Ranging in his examples from national differences in toilet design to cybersex, and from intellectuals' responses to the Bosnian war to Robert Schumann's music, Zizek explores the relations between fantasy and ideology, the way in which fantasy animates enjoy-ment while protecting against its excesses, the associations of the notion of fetishism with fantasized seduction, and the ways in which digitalization and cyberspace affect the status of subjectivity. To the already initiated, The Plague of Fantasies will be a welcome reminder of why they enjoy Zizek's writing so much. For new readers, it will be the beginning of a long and meaningful relationship.
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.
What is the basis of belief in an era when globalization, multiculturalism and big business are the new religion? Slavoj Zizek, renowned philosopher and irrepressible cultural critic takes on all comers in this compelling and breathless new book. From 'cyberspace reason' to the paradox that is 'Western Buddhism', On Belief gets behind the contours of the way we normally think about belief, in particular Judaism and Christianity. Holding up the so-called authenticity of religious belief to critical light, Zizek draws on psychoanalysis, film and philosophy to reveal in startling fashion that nothing could be worse for believers than their beliefs turning out to be true.
Zizek argues that the physical violence we see is often generated by the systemic violence that sustains our political and economic systems. With the help of eminent philosophers like Marx, Engel and Lacan, as well as frequent references to popular culture, he examines the real causes of violent outbreaks like those seen in Israel and Palestine and in terrorist acts around the world. Ultimately, he warns, doing nothing is often the most violent course of action we can take.
'The Elvis of cultural theory' confirms his status as the most exciting philosopher in recent history as he explores the nature of violence in typically controversial style.
Slavoj Zizek is no ordinary philosopher. Approaching critical theory and psychoanalysis in a recklessly entertaining fashion, Zizek's critical eye alights upon a bewildering and exhilarating range of subjects, from the political apathy of contemporary life, to a joke about the man who thinks he's a chicken, from the ethicial heroism of Keanu Reeves in Speed, to what toilet designs reveal about the national psyche. Tony Myers provides a clear and engaging guide to Zizek's key ideas, explaining the main influences on Zizek's thought (most crucially his engagement with Lacanian psychoanalysis) using examples drawn from popular culture and everyday life. Myers outlines the key issues that Zizek's work has tackled, including: What is a Subject and why is it so important? The Imaginary, the Symbolic and the Real What is so terrible about Postmodernity? How can we distinguish reality from ideology? What is the relationship between men and women? Why is Racism always a fantasy? Slavoj Zizek is essential reading for anyone wanting to understand the thought of the critic whom Terry Eagleton has described as "the most formidably brilliant exponent of psychoanalysis, indeed of cultural theory in general, to have emerged in Europe for some decades.

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