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Democracy Now: Savoj Zizek October 15, 2009


Dubbed by the National Review as “the most dangerous political philosopher in the West”, and the New York Times as “the Elvis of cultural theory”, Slovenian philosopher and public intellectual Slavoj Zizek has written over fifty books on philosophy, psychoanalysis, theology, history, and political theory. In his latest book, “First as Tragedy, Then As Farce”, Zizek analyzes how the United States has moved from the tragedy of 9/11 to what he calls the farce of the financial meltdown.

We continue on the subject of the financial crisis with a man the National Review calls the most dangerous political philosopher in the West. The New York Times calls him the Elvis of cultural theory. Slovenian philosopher and public intellectual Slavoj Zizek has written over fifty books on philosophy, psychoanalysis, theology, history, and political theory. His latest, just out from Verso is called “First as Tragedy, Then As Farce.” It analyzes how the United States has moved from the tragedy of 9/11 to the farce of the financial meltdown.

Zizek’s latest offering also excerpted in the October issue of Harper”s magazine opens with the words: “The only truly surprising thing about the 2008 financial meltdown is how easily the idea was accepted that its happening was unpredictable.” He goes on to recall how the demonstrations against the IMF and the World Bank over the past decade all protested the ways in which banks were playing with money and warned of an impending crash. They were met with tear-gas and mass arrests.

The message, he writes, was “loud and clear, and the police were used to literally stifle the truth.”

Well, Slavoj Zizek addressed a full house at Cooper Union here in New York city Wednesday night and he joins us now in the firehouse studio.

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