Slavoj Zizek

Slavoj Zizek

Slavoj Zizek

Slavoj Zizek

Synopsis

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.

Excerpt

The books in this series offer introductions to major critical thinkers who have influenced literary studies and the humanities. The Routledge Critical Thinkers series provides the books you can turn to first when a new name or concept appears in your studies.

Each book will equip you to approach a key thinker's original texts by explaining her or his key ideas, putting them into context and, perhaps most importantly, showing you why this thinker is considered to be significant. The emphasis is on concise, clearly written guides which do not presuppose a specialist knowledge. Although the focus is on particular figures, the series stresses that no critical thinker ever existed in a vacuum but, instead, emerged from a broader intellectual, cultural and social history. Finally, these books will act as a bridge between you and the thinker's original texts: not replacing them but rather complementing what she or he wrote.

These books are necessary for a number of reasons. In his 1997 autobiography, Not Entitled, the literary critic Frank Kermode wrote of a time in the 1960s:

On beautiful summer lawns, young people lay together all night, recovering from their daytime exertions and listening to a troupe of Balinese musicians. Under their blankets or their sleeping bags, they would chat drowsily about the gurus of the time…. What they repeated was largely hearsay; hence my

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