On Zizek's Dialectics explores the theoretical and practical potential of the psychoanalytic method deployed by Slavoj Zizek by investigating its epistemological implications within our contemporary capitalist universe. The book begins by evaluating Zizek's account of the capitalist ideology of enjoyment through the analysis of Lacan's critique of Marx's surplus-value. If the originality of Zizek's wager lies in the claim that enjoyment secretly sustains our ideological space, can we think of surplus-jouissance in a way that not only unmasks the ruse of capitalism but also adumbrates the construction of an alternative social space? The answer to this question is developed in the second part of the book. Arguing that the transformative potential of Zizek's epistemology needs to be fully unravelled if it is to avoid the risk of congealing into mere academic exercise, Fabio Vighi attempts to politicise Zizek's groundbreaking critical method by calling upon the necessity to translate its emphasis on the indigestible surplus of knowledge into the drive to think the new. Under the current conditions, this creative moment can no longer be delayed.
Fabio Vighi is Senior Lecturer and co-director of the Zizek Centre for Ideology Critique at Cardiff University, UK. He is the author of Sexual Difference in European Cinema (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2008).
Introduction; Part I: The enjoyment of capitalism: surplus-jouissance and work; 1. The will to enjoyment; 2. Jouissance at arm's length; 3. From surplus-value to surplus-jouissance; 4. The unbearable lightness of being the proletariat; 5. Shame, subversion, and manual labour; 6. Karatani's wager; Excursus 1: Georges Bataille's potlach and the splendour of rags; Excursus 2: Silvio Berlusconi's enjoyment and related obscenities; Part II: The suplus of thought: epistemology and dialectics; 7. From subject to a political subject; 8. Democracy under duress; 9. Dialectical materialism as parallax; 10. The vicissitudes of subtraction; 11. The invisible rabbit inside the hat; 12. 'Though this be madness, yet there is method in it'; Bibliography; Index.