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Great Minds: Slavoj Žižek
- Опубліковано 3 лип 2011
Modern radical thinker Slavoj Žižek spoke on the 1st July as part of the 'Great Minds' series, and affirmed his status as a great mind of modern philosophy and social, cultural and political theory. Starbucks, social solidarity and self-commodification were among the varied and enlightening topics touched upon by Žižek, all grounded by his interpretation of ideology and its continuing importance.
One of Europe's foremost Marxist theorists, Žižek criticised modern leftist groups who, he argued, didn't really know how to cope with the upheaval of the 'sublime' moment (revelation that an assumed state of total happiness is actually nonexistent). The question of 'what happens next' has been asked since the dwindling exhaustion of modernism into postmodernism. Žižek asks us to put ideological pressure on modern life, confirming the presence of ideological symbolism even in blatant popular culture (such as two Oscar-winning films, The King's Speech and Black Swan ).
His manner was sometimes serious, sometimes comic and vaguely apocalyptic (he is a self confessed pessimist), which all together made for an engaging talk, dense in historical, anecdotal and political references. The combination of issues allowed the modern audience member to examine their own behaviour alongside Hegelian optimism, Freudian self-commodification and Marxist ideas of social roles, in a non 'academic' sense, referring to the purchasing of Starbucks coffee as a subconscious purchasing of social solidarity built into the price. An audience member asks 'isn't it the case that people know that what they're doing is buying a coffee that will then, in some sort of self-serving way, make them feel better about themselves?', thus showing that ideology is no longer a 'smokescreen' of sorts. Žižek answers by claiming that we follow things, knowing that they are ideologies, and this does not necessarily make them 'right' or true. This is where the notion of ideology seems to be headed; to a total self consciousness -- as with a Hegelian resolution of the 'Zeitgeist' (Žižek is actually close to the publishing of an 800 page book on Hegel).
In his relatively brief talk, Slavoj Žižek managed to expose our susceptibility to certain ideologies, thus proving their ever present role in modern society - not bad for a Friday night in West London, perhaps the capital of the British bourgeoisie.
КОМЕНТАРІ • 431
I cant tell if his open-endedness is a compliment, in that he assumes we are all intelligent enough to fill in the blanks, or if he is just so dishevelled that its a naturally product of his brain activity. Either way, love him!
It's a product of him being a Hegelian
I've had a feeling for so long why my intellectual peers are wrong in so many points of their world view, but I couldn't point it out, thus wasn't taken seriously. Now Zizek points it out clearly, what's wrong with them. He even goes beyond and shows even me new perspectives. Kudos to this man.
🤣ma gavte la nata
I am Zizekian! Long live Zizek!
Sometimes I think Zizek's greatness lies in his ability, not to invent new material or produce original thought, but rather in finding pop cultural pearls.
I think this is the best, most consistent talk I have seen of him here on YT. And I have seen a lot of them.
@Davy Roger Yes, I like that one too. In fact, there are two.
The onw with Paul Holdengraber is one of the best
Ivan McGreggor. Before he became Jedi.
@Michael Ware Clear, focused, without too many digressions... I think he was simply a bit tired, to be honest.
What do you mean by consistent?
The Charing Philosopher. I could listen to him for hours
You know he’s a great mind when this is still relevant today.
People don't act on what they believe because society has invested a lot of money into making us all feel insecure and not sure of what we see and know. We are all in a constant state of insecurity 24/7. Even if you think your not, YOU ARE!
When you look back in time the era's that had no media, those times were colourful, creative, great minds were born, people were interesting. As soon as media began, all creativity went out the door and people became subservient.....the age of insecurity was born.
By far the clearest presentation of Slavoj's i've heard, or perhaps i'm now getting the gist of it!?
Absolutely brilliant! Remarkable presentation!
Good insight on the change occurring within universities...Here in Australia we have our own version of the private use of reasoning: Its called the Melbourne Model...streamlined education to get you to become a unit of capital asap..Not to mention the proliferation of so-called long distance courses, higher education "institutions", etc etc...
It's good thing Slavoj is still around. One of the few Marxist intellectuals left in academia these days. He really challenges the main stream ideas common in so many social an political science curricula.
Marxist socialism breaks down due to human want, selfishness and greed. I don't know how Slavoj's beloved Hegelianism fits into the political scheme of things. I wonder whether Slavoj Zizek would make a good humanist? He is certainly one of the finest polymathic philosophy thinkers alive today!
Him and Badiou!
hzingano tell me who these marxist teachers are in academia because i seem to keep missing them
This man has VERY original observations. Ideology is still alive and thriving, for better and worst.
And so on....Though no.... Whereas Islam is the truth and solution to the problems of the mankind, ideologies can never be trve and real. And their time is looooonnnng gone.
And so on
this man has the word i never had to my ideas and thought i have and ideas to thought i never had manly the latter
The worst use of "I'll try to keep this brief" at the end (by an audience member). :)
Not my disciple but you are doing it right and sometimes funny.
I think this is the best talk on ideology i have ever listend to.
I'm perpetually amazed how does he jump form genial insights into notions which make me want to crie. :)
is there any possibility to obtain a text of his talk here?
I've watched a lot of zizek this year and last night I met zizek in my dream. We looked at museums where I work and I tried to be smart and give big explanations but he I got the notion that it was insignificant to him until he asked me what church was the most beautiful in Tyrol where I am from and I told him the court church but it was more like a museum to me. Either way, we went around Innsbruck and we made some pictures. It was a nice dream. Miss you slavoi
@Chlorine forgot about the dream again. Thanks 😅
Just reminding you of the dream again
@Alex Petrow isn't it strange?
@Solange Araujo I forgot about this dream, thank you for your reply!
Happened to me last night🤔
Is there a transcript of this anywhere? It would be of some use for some of the things he refers to.
Two words: Psychotic brilliance.
30:00 (Kant) - 37:20 is fookin' brilliant ! Go, Slavoj GO !
"She's dead. She died and so on." hahahah
@rvr ahaha.. yes, they shall marry and so on
Everytime Zizek speaks he is grabbing either his nose or shirt, therefore, a thumbnail of him grabbing his nose is a pretty accurate representation of any video Zizek speaks in.
This is an excellent lecture, I am still in a state of misunderstanding wether or not the " knowing of a fact" that has the potential to lead to a catastrophic outcome and not acting on that fact in some preventive manner is in it's self an ideology? Or is that the problem with ideologies of modernity, the past and or the future?
It is wrong to say that ignorance is bliss, James, as you might know.
"Don't know what you did to this microphone Slavoj..." "I did NOTHING."
That's exactly how Kant's name is correctly pronounced in German. It's funny how some people, Americans in particular, desperately mispronounce his name as "Can't" or "Kaaaant".
you can also reject it, but if you do it without understanding it then you are prejudicially rejecting it
Even the first minute was a genius statement. Love that punch.
An ideology cannot be WITHOUT villains.There's always the bad guy somewhere.
@Zhiloreznik haha cheers mate i definitely agree. you should read umair haque if you do not already. talks about redefining economic thinking for the 21st century
I'm sure Zizek (and many famous intellectuals) gets that a lot. There's a doc where a young fan tried making an impression on him (which failed) and was very awkward to watch.
"The movie with Ewan McGregor before he became a Jedi..." hahaha
No ideology comes without it's problems, or it's villains. Comparing them is all you can do.
"Hit him in his Hamster", love it.
@Vier5501 It's not stated in the film. It's given as one of the many problems that could have caused it.
this guy always convinces me i need therapy
@mltorley Moreover, this came just to my mind after posting, I once I told this classmate I had autism, and he didn't believe me!
I think they purposefully positioned the camera so that you are forced to see the EYE, instead of his eyes.
@Vier5501 The other explinations, both explicit and implicit are the pressure of being king, the favouritism of his father, his domineering older brother etc. Then there's all the underlying tensions and you could probably crack out some Frued on this bad-boy.
Great contemporary thinker - On ideology
@TheRacistsMustDie Its not so hard to grasp as you may think. There's a bit of a trap that can get you stuck in an infinite loop but since its basically just a fractal its pretty easy to work out the essence of the pattern.
Its a shame most people can't see it but human perception is pretty limited. People on the autism scale tend to get caught up in calculating incalculable relations. The numbers and functions keep changing.
Once you figure out whats fuzzy and whats emergent, its easy.
i love slavoj, you know? hes good and so on and so on
@boracay234 But of course there can be something better. Internet is an amazing tool for developing ideas. They should not be negated so easily as rubbish. All systems must be under constant pressure to point out better solutions and dispose bad ones. If it is constructive is always welcome. Free thinking society is a necessary step for better future. I acknowledge your arguments as you do mine and I praise constructive dialog. Not many dialog's on the internet are so constructive. Sadly.
Where does Zizek speak of this Hegel book? I some how missed it.
There's no chance to have some subtitles? Please?
Zizek should introduce cable TV news with a joke.
I love how he tried not to touch his nose at the begining
You mean like zizek himself? I like the guy, but after hearing him speak for an hour I bet they get influenced by it.
must say, those communist/soviet jokes are gold.
@mltorley Well I was talking more about the concept of overdetermination which states that no theory about the social world can ever be fully conclusive which if I think Althusser was the the first one to come up with, but afterwards it has become a commonly accepted fact in the social sciences (which I study, thus my outrage). It is btw not a concept grounded in Marxism so criticizing that wont really bring overdetermination into discredit. Why he didn't believe me? Because he thought I was
Perfect comedic timing
An optimist and a pessimist are standing at the edge of a cliff. The pessimist looks down and says depressingly:"If i jump, I will die. "The optimist responds: Well, walk then."
Zizek is right - we seriously need to think our way out of this mess. This means challenging the very core assumptions of our thought. I've started a discussion of these issues - just search material indeterminism on google.
...think alike ❤
I don't agree with his reading of Black Swan but I am currently reading The Parallax View and it is very good.
Nothing says, ‘Pro’ quite like starting off with, ‘I hope this works’.
Why don't people in the audience just ask simple questions, succinct and clear? There is always someone who tells about his own life, makes statements, tells jokes, tries to outwit the speakers, tries to propose a whole counterargument, drops some names, elaborates more facts... crazy.
But I think exactly these small added subinfos in there questions were nessecary to make the point clear, even though they might appeared annoying and unnecessary to you. Often times the" Nebensächlichkeiten" are only able to build the "Hauptsache".
Does anyone else think that because we did not come up with Ancient Greek Philosophy, but have attempted to apply it, that we might be able to avoid a “fall of Rome,” but more dealing with of things “falling into place.”
Try to comprehend Zizek's mind::::::Brain Freeze:::Over Load~~~
I have no idea what he's talking about, but it's fascinating
Neither does he ..so wouldn't worry too much . Try reading
H C Andersen ; The Emperor's New Clothes ? All will become clear !
Name Name Sounds more like you are projecting yourself. And if not, continue with your fantasies
Name Name What insecurities?
Shivaal Tiluk China
@TheRacistsMustDie So long as you avoid falling into the trap of trying to model social behavior on the level of the individual, the relevant forces make themselves clear and can be easily mapped. The result is fuzzy, due to the high level of uncertainty (which makes it look a lot like quantum mechanics), but a social theory shouldn't aim for too much detail anyhow.
It is only the overemphasis on the expectation of rational behavior that leads to inconclusive theory. Humans ain't that rational
here in europe most intelligent beings arent very loud either, actually from what i saw they get more media coverage in the US but probably not many people watch it. most people i met where really just parroting somebody else but immediately fail to actually pose sensible arguments, mostly retreating to name calling or ad hominem "arguments". i try to still believe in humanity a little though, if that wasnt the case i would mostly be a hedonist too i suppose
jajaja truly bolchevique part of London jaja love this guy.
So basically his answer to subconsciously believing our ideology is to challenge the natural rules of the system?
Doesn't that mean that we have to be outside of it, to get the perspective? To capture what is not said?
It means that you should never allow yourself to be complacent in your critique of anything at all ever. Constantly subject your observations and environment to critique. Critique your critique.
+Cookielol what is intropection
How can i contribute by captioning this to spanish?
Well, if he seriously thinks that the best way to fix the computer is to stick enough bobby pins through the ventilator and goes on to present his approach seriously to an auditorium full of people, then yeah, you're probably better off disregarding whatever he has to say, no matter the topic.
one is not necessary antisemitic to criticize Israel, but there is a necessity to point out that you are not antisemitic if you are actually criticizing Israel.
pause at @1:15:02 this is what shall be the model for the giant Zizezk that will stand watch over my harbour.
yeah but the thing is he's not talking about the "point" of the movie, he's actually talking about what the movie is not 'saying' but implying. That's his point on ideology today, it is so strong that we're not even aware of all our own beliefs because we are not aware of their implications; so that's the point, the king finally becomes enough of an 'idiot' to take himself seriously; that's ideology, we become stupid enough to take it seriously
Thx Iqsquared Couldnt buy get or acquire Perverts Guide to Ideology over here in Holy Catholic Ireland this is the closest Ill get I spose
There's a handy way to see if he has anything sensible to say. It mostly revolves around watching the rest of it.
exactly, what i think we're going back now is this more radical, polarised way of thinking and that plays into the hands of extreme left and extreme right parties, everywhere in europe especially the extreme right is getting stronger again and many leftists are so extreme that you could almost call them nazis.i believe in the notion that there is a constant exchange from structure to chaos back to structure happening in society, ideological systems kind of repeat themselves over and over.
Very interesting discussion. While I don't agree with him, he's obviously a very intelligent man. It's a pity he hasn't been able to wean himself off eating his own snot (36:13), as it erodes his credibility somewhat.
how does this man prepare for his speeches ?
He doesn t . The speech prepares for him.
I know what you are describing. Unfortunately however you will never know unless you actually understand it :)
Many of his points presuppose some familiarity with some philosophical notions, so if you really want to get it, you should probably read up on the big philosophers, and at the very least some Descartes, Hegel and maybe some psychoanalysis, many of his references both obvious and subtle are rooted there.
Around 30:00 he talks about universities producing experts, who will then figure out how to exercise soft power and spin in order to avoid public criticism and gatherings, e.g. I think he refers to protest and crowd control, media spin and by the use of mass media maintain an ever present narrative that leaves no room for dissidence or criticism. I think he refers to some kind of "economism", that can always point to a buttom line for justification. If so I think he's right, it's happening.
at last some1 pointed out the attack on the public use of reason
Is Zizek being serious with his analysis about Black Swan? In what sense does western (or any other) culture tell women but not men, that they will die if they choose a career, and in what sense is a man but not a woman with a career allowed to have a private life? Any examples?
The second coffee scene he refers was also used in Seinfeld? George costanza turned down an invite because it was too late for coffee.
philosophical questions today are like the Palestinian conflict.
before one starts making his point, one has to start with:
i'm not antisemite, but...
i'm not islamophobe, but...
what is the palestine question in it deepest core?
the question of identity within geographic borders.
the whole conflict is unsolvable today because
the Zeitgeist prohibits the plane and simple answer:
there should be a vague identity shared between citizens of a country.
He makes a point about your opinion on the idea that politics is hopeless; but he says that the odd thing is that people who dismiss the whole political establishment still demand, as if to someone else, change; they never say, we the people will take over this responsibility, it's always about an external solution
22:25-22:26 classic zizek xD
@Lucas ' in a true communist society only the essential material things are necessary' bit of a 'no true scotsman move there, but aside from that, Baudrillard pretty much exposed the division between real needs and false needs as capitalist ideology itself, presupposing an order of needs which naturalises utilitarian need and weakens so called 'unessential needs'. In common sense terms we can sort of identify what we think are the important needs, but it's ideological too
@anarchistory I don't agree with you, but I disagree more with the fact that your comment has been semi-censored because 'too' many people dislike it. Zizek would have a lot to say about that.
This is great. I can't help wondering if his body language means something, like how he keeps touching his face.
He just needs to touch his nose every now and again before he decoheres into all of his subsequent sentences, it's where he keeps his words and mirrors.
He had a stroke and since then he has these "ticks".
I loved this and so on.
19:59 "--I don't have time to go into this direction, but nonetheless--"
^ _ ^
no, actually scarcity as we know it is an ideological construct; we fear scarcity because our ideologial system is about expanding capital; scarcity would be the demise of capitalism; a true communist regime wouldn't be so ideologically oriented to scarcity. That's the thing, we are materialistic, and our measurements of "good" life are based on these material values; in a true communist society only the essential material things are necessary.
What do you think of art?
@AndroidPolitician if you listened to some of his other stuff, he explicitly rejects both those ideas as Cold War propaganda
@astroboomboy Which is itself one of the two major flaws in Marxism - it ignores fundamental aspects of human nature; so that even if the controlled collapse and resolution of the dialectic can be achieved (and it cannot, this being the other fundamental flaw), the resulting social order cannot be maintained as certain fundamental drives are left unchecked.
I think I should try readings his books rather listening to him talk, which I hope will be far less tangential. Any recommendations ?
Not really - his books are pretty tangential too. The best book to start reading would probably be his book of jokes...
+Aaron Temple I would avoid his books altogether and read Thomas Sowell's 'Intellectuals and Society' and Eric Hoffer's 'The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of mass movements'
"Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength"
+Aaron Temple start with the sublime object of ideology
+Aaron Temple Start with first book I would imagine.
@mltorley normal, apparently I didn't fit well enough into the stereotype.
This has aged like wine.
I'll be brief' say the first questioner, and takes 4 minutes to ask his question.