Slavoj Zizek, a philosopher and cultural critic, is Senior Researcher in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Ljubljana, Global Distinguished Professor of German at New York University, and International Director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities at the University of London. He is the author of more than thirty books, including Looking Awry: An Introduction to Jacques Lacan through Popular Culture, The Puppet and the Dwarf: The Perverse Core of Christianity, The Parallax View, The Monstrosity of Christ: Paradox or Dialectic (with John Milbank), and Zizek's Jokes (Did you hear the one about Hegel and negation?), these five published by the MIT Press.
A Lacanian-Hegelian philosopher and pop culture critic who divides his time between America and Slovenia, Zizek is one of the few living writers to combine theoretical rigor with compulsive readability, and his new volume provides perhaps the clearest elaboration of his theoretical framework thus far. Expatiating on such subjects as Heidegger, neuroscience, the war on terror and The Matrix, he seeks to rehabilitate dialectical materialism by replacing the popular "yin-yang" interpretation (the struggle between opposites that ultimately form a whole) with a theory of the "gap which separates the One from itself." One example is a tribe whose two subgroups draw mutually exclusive plans of their village: their deadlock "implies a hidden reference to a constant... an imbalance in social relations that prevented the community from stabilizing itself into a harmonious whole." Discussing Abu Ghraib and pedophilia in the Catholic Church, Zizek explores how an ideological edifice is sustained by underground transgressions: "Law can be sustained only by a sovereign power which reserves for itself the right... to suspend the rule of law(s) on behalf of the Law itself." Based on his interpretation of Lacanian psychoanalysis, he envisions a society in which public law would no longer sustain itself through its own obscene breach. This challenging book takes us on a roller-coaster ride whose every loop is a Mobius strip. (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
In this huge, thrilling book, Slavoj Zizek enacts a dazzling display of philosophy as performance art, delighting in upsetting readers' expectations, inserting sly jokes, and castigating the 'boring' political analyses of just about everyone....Zizek is a thinker who regards nothing as outside his field: the result is deeply interesting and provocative.-The Guardian
A remarkable demonstration of continental philosophical and psychoanalytical pyrotechnics. More provocative ideas per page than normally found in whole books by the dull anglophone empiricists who find him so threatening.-Paul A. Taylor, Times Higher Education
Frankly, a magnum opus is exactly what Zizek needs right now....The Parallax View consolidates Zizek's work as a whole and decisively moves it forward.-In These Times
No one demonstrates the continued philosophical vitality of Marxism better than Slavoj Zizek.-Tikkun
Zizek has only to clap eyes on a received truth to feel the intolerable itch to deface it....Zizek is that rare breed of writer-one who is both lucid and esoteric. If he is sometimes hard to understand, it is because of the intricacy of his ideas, not because of a self-preening style.-Terry Eagleton, Artforum
Zizek is one of the few living writers to combine theoretical rigor with compulsive readability, and his new volume provides perhaps the clearest elaboration of his theoretical framework thus far....This challenging book takes us on a roller-coaster ride whose every loop is a Moebius strip.-Publishers Weekly