Žižek: Beyond Foucault by Fabio Vighi, Heiko Feldner

By Fabio Vighi, Heiko Feldner

In Slavoj Zizek and Michel Foucault, this publication brings jointly of the main well known thinkers in modern severe idea. ranging from a severe evaluate of the Foucauldian paradigm of discourse research, it explores the theoretical scope and political effects of Zizek's combination of Lacanian psychoanalysis, Hegelian philosophy and Marxist politics. The comparability among the 2 thinkers throws into reduction the commonalities and irreconcilable alterations in their respective methods to severe thought. through unmasking fact as contingent symbolic fiction, the authors argue, Foucauldian feedback has purely deconstructed the area in several methods; the purpose, besides the fact that, is `to realize the genuine in what seems to be mere symbolic fiction' (Zizek) and to alter it.

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One of his most scathing attacks on Hegel can be found in another piece on Deleuze. ). Its original sin consisted in its pretence of liberating difference when it did not. Quite the contrary, Foucault argued, rather than liberating differences, dialectics guarantees that they can always be recaptured. For difference to have a place, it was necessary to divide the ‘same’ through contradiction, to limit its infinite identity through nonbeing, to transform its indeterminate positivity through the negative.

This consideration brings us directly to the crucial notion of ‘the act’ and, with it, to a reflection on the question of agency; both these questions shall be developed fully in Part II. Going back to Zˇizˇek’s particular branch of ideology critique, we could maintain that the non-discursive excess of ideology effectively coincides with the non-discursive excess of subjectivity, in the sense that both supplements embody the Real substance around which the commonly understood notions of ideology and subjectivity are structured.

Similarly, as in the famous case of Freud’s little daughter’s predilection for strawberry cakes, we can claim that our activity is a direct emanation of our desires only if we acknowledge that our desires are generally conceived as an answer to the bothering gaze of the other, a gaze invested by jouissance: in Freud’s daughter’s case, ‘the crucial feature is that while she was voraciously eating a strawberry cake, the little girl noticed how her parents were deeply satisfied by this spectacle, by seeing her fully enjoying it’ (Zˇizˇek, 1997, 9).

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