One of the most symptomatic manifestations of this…

One of the most symptomatic manifestations of this onslaught on any real critique, i.e. critique that does not limit itself to mere window dressing, is no doubt today’s insistence on constructive critique. What has become completely unacceptable is to ‘merely’ criticize, that is, to critically diagnose and analyse society’s contradictions without at the same time offering a concrete alternative or solution for the predicaments analysed. The latter has become the sole criterion according to which every criticism is judged.

It is therefore clear that the demand for constructive criticism deals a direct blow to any real critique. After all, radical critique – by its very nature – cannot immediately be made productive within the existing order since the latter is radically put into question.

Always Choose the Worst Option - Artistic Resistance and the Strategy of Over-Identification, Bavo

Zizek: The Reality of the Virtual

Outside of my normal flippant abrogation of its meaning, there are not too many people for whom I genuinely reserve the word ‘genius’. One of the few is my long-time favourite critical theorist/philosophers whose early works, Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Lacan … But Were Afraid to Ask Hitchcock, and For They Know Not What They Do were a profound influence on my philosophical conception of the world. Slavoj Zizek is the subject of Ben Wright’s new film, Slavoj Zizek: The Reality of the Virtual.

Slavoj Zizek is one of the most distinguished and politically engaged thinkers of our time. In this tour de force filmed lecture, he lucidly and compellingly reflects on belief – which takes him from Father Christmas to democracy – and on the various forms that belief takes, drawing on Lacanian categories of thought. In a radical dismissal of today’s so called post-political era, he mobilizes the paradox of universal truth urging us to dare to enact the impossible. It is a characteristic virtuoso performance, moving promiscuously from subject to subject but keeping the larger argument in view.

“Zizek: The Reality of the Virtual” premiers at Quad Cinema on Friday June 2, 2006.

— Rhizome.org