Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Slavoj Zizek. Violence

I've just finished a marvelous book written by Slavoj Zizek called Violence (2009). He asks if capitalism causes more violence than it prevents. His analysis of capitalist democracies is interesting reading and pleas for my awareness. He does this by exploring the bloody totalitarian regimes of the last century and the violence which is named "divined".

I'm amazed by the way Zizek is able combine philosophers as Kant and Lacan together with contemporary cinema. And he always has a joke up his sleeve. He writes of globalization, capitalism, fundamentalism, and language.I have not before read a book about violence in this provoking way before. The book has made me reflect on violence in a new way.

The subtitle of the book is "six sideways reflections", which is related to the books six chapters. They are as follows:
1. SOS Violence
2. Fear thy neighbour as thyself!
3. A blood-dimmed tide is loosed
4. Antimonies of tolerant reason
5. Tolerence as an ideological category
6. Divine violence

He also offers a bibliography at the end of the book, something most philosophers do not have in their books. This is a book I will be reading several times, and I'm reflecting on using it also in my classes on domestic violence.  

Kaare T. Pettersen

Reference: Zizek, Slavoj, 2009. Violence. Six Sideways Reflections.  London: Profile Books

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