For They Know Not what They Do: Enjoyment as a Political Factor

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Verso, 2002 - Philosophy - 288 pages
With the disintegration of state socialism, we are witnessing this eruption of enjoymnet in the re-emergence of aggressive nationalism and racism. With the lid of repression lifted, the desires that have emerged are from from democratic. To explain this apparent paradox, says Slavoj Zizek, socialist critical thought must turn to psychoanalysis.

For They Know Not What They Do seeks to understand the status of enjoyment within ideological discourse, from Hegel through Lacan to these political and ideological deadlocks. The author's own enjoyment of "popular culture" makes this an engaging and lucid exposition, in which Hegel joins hands with Rossellini, Marx with Hitchcock, Lacan with Frankenstein, high theory with Hollywood melodrama.
 

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Contents

the Limits of Reason Alone
xi
The Hard Road to Dialectical Materialism From
lxxxix
Destiny of a Joke
1
On the One
7
The quilting point A signifier represents the subject
27
The Wanton Identity
61
Dialectics and its Discontents
97
On the Other
141
forced choice Objective certainty From A to 8
156
Alls Well That Ends Well?
179
primitive accumulation The paradox of a finite
219
Much Ado about a Thing
229
Index
279
Copyright

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About the author (2002)

Slavoj Žižek is a Slovenian philosopher and cultural critic. He is a professor at the European Graduate School, International Director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, Birkbeck College, University of London, and a senior researcher at the Institute of Sociology, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. His books include Living in the End Times, First as Tragedy, Then as Farce, In Defense of Lost Causes, four volumes of the Essential Žižek, and many more.

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