Culture Clash

Slavoj Žižek, the Ideal Fraud

December 07, 2014

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Not that there is much chance of such a thing happening. There is, for example, an International Journal of Žižek Studies (from which you can buy a Žižekian T-shirt if you are truly free to do so, perhaps a welcome change from the hackneyed Che Guevara variety). The journal contains the kind of articles that begin as follows:

This essay develops Slavoj Å½ižek’s critique of Quentin Meillassoux’s speculative materialism. The first part consists of a discussion of Meillassoux’s “€˜principle of factiality”€™ (which states that only contingency is necessary) and Ray Brassier’s problematization of this principle’s self-referentiality. The second part takes up Žižek’s critique of Meillassoux, which solves the problem of self-reference by dialecticizing the principle of factiality, ending up with the thesis of the contingency of necessity. The third part is an elaboration of Å½ižek’s critique in which the main lacuna in Meillassoux’s philosophy, i.e. the lack of any account of the genesis of subjectivity, is seen to lead to a disavowal of “€˜constitutive mythology”€™ as theorized by Markus Gabriel. It is argued that Meillassoux’s notion of “€˜hyper-Chaos”€™ is in fact the core of his mythology, which becomes especially clear when contrasted with an alternative mythology, namely Henri Bergson’s vision of “€˜creative evolution”€™. Finally, it is shown how Å½ižek’s critique of Meillassoux gravitates toward this mythology of creative evolution as his Lacanian version of dialectical materialism is reformulated in the light of the speculative realist problematic.

And if this essay fits you down to a T-shirt, you can always progress to “€œThe Question of Belief: Žižek, Desire and DIY Ideology.”€ 

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