Showing posts from August, 2019

Immanent Critique and the Argument from Authority

Pastiche - which, as Jameson notes, is characteristic of postmodernism - is difficult to overcome.  It is difficult even to imagine overcoming it.  This is one aspect of the larger problem that it is less difficult to imagine the end of the world than to imagine the end of capitalism. How can one overcome pastiche?  Only through immanent critique.  (The immanent critique of pastiche itself - that is a fascinating and provocative proposition.) It is an understandable misunderstanding to assume that immanent critique is characterized by a sarcastic attitude. Might one provisionally accept the methodological presuppositions of that which one is critiquing?  Perhaps.  Does this necessarily entail some amount of irony?  Maybe.  But for immanent critique to work, it demands a profound seriousness and dedication taken all the way to the end and beyond.  One must "play it straight." For that reason, the danger of miscommunication lies in the opposite direction from sarcasm. The

In Praise of Irresponsibility: The Politics of Universal Castration

[note: This 41 page paper was originally submitted for a lecture I gave at the International Journal of Zizek Studies Conference in 2012, of which I cannot help thinking as a more innocent time. It served as my lecture notes, even though I did not have anywhere near enough time to go through even a small portion of it.  Actually, this version was edited down considerably from a much, much longer, even more wandering, unfinished version - one that I cannot seem to locate .  There were extensive revisions, with paragraphs re-ordered and large sections deleted entirely.  Also, to the dismay of the editors of the journal, it had relatively few direct references to Slavoj Zizek.  Ultimately I abandoned this project and wrote an entirely different essay, which was published here: The International Journal of Zizek Studies Looking back at this essay, I am dismayed at its many failings.  The editors may have found it insufficiently Zizekian, but I find it way too Zizekian, now.  Clearly I