The Sublime Object of Ideology

The Sublime Object of Ideology

Book - 2008
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Slavoj Zizek, the maverick philosopher, author of over 30 books, acclaimed as the "Elvis of cultural theory", and today's most controversial public intellectual. His work traverses the fields of philosophy, psychoanalysis, theology, history and political theory, taking in film, popular culture, literature and jokes--all to provide acute analyses of the complexities of contemporary ideology as well as a serious and sophisticated philosophy. His recent films The Pervert's Guide to the Cinema and Zizek! reveal a theorist at the peak of his powers and a skilled communicator. Now Verso is making his classic titles, each of which stand as a core of his ever-expanding life's work, available as new editions. Each is beautifully re-packaged, including new introductions from Zizek himself. Simply put, they are the essential texts for understanding Zizek's thought and thus cornerstones of contemporary philosophy.

The Sublime Object of Ideology : Slavoj Zizek's first book is a provocative and original work looking at the question of human agency in a postmodern world. In a thrilling tour de force that made his name, he explores the ideological fantasies of wholeness and exclusion which make up human society.
Publisher: London ; New York : Verso, 2008, ©1989
ISBN: 9781844673001
Branch Call Number: 140 Zi
Description: xxxi, 272 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm


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Apr 24, 2015

"The most elementary definition of ideology is probably the well-known phrase from Marx's "Capital:" 'they do not know it, but they are doing it.' The very concept of ideology implies a kind of basic, constructive naivete: the misrecognition of its ow presuppositions, of its own effective conditions, a distance, a divergence between so-called social reality and our distorted representation, our false consciousness of it."
Got that? Slovenian thinker/writer/gadfly Slavoj Zizek has been called the Elvis of cultural theory, but he could just as easily be the Carl Perkins of post-Lacanian psychoanalytic philosophy. He is the closest to a cultural figure as a philosopher can get, the subject of a documentary, and the star/host of two movies which take an ideological look at films ("The Pervert's Guide" series). His engagement with popular culture, especially film (especially Hitchcock) makes him a little more approachable, although not easy to read. This is part of a series called "The Essential Zizek" and is a good, if dense and obtuse, introduction to his ideas, which draw from Lacan, Marx, Hegel, and Christian theology. I can't say I understood if all the time, but it is a stimulating and provocative read. "Violence" and "First as Tragedy, Then as Farce" are slightly more accessible texts. ". . .it is this very immanent limit, this 'internal contradiction,' which drives capitalism into permanent development. The 'normal' state of capitalism is the permanent revolutionizing of its own conditions of existence. . .incessant development is the only way for it to resolve again and again, come to terms with, its own fundamental, constitutive imbalance, 'contradiction.'"


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