Thursday, December 26, 2013

The Cunning of Unreason

By contrast, as Zizek acknowledges in "The Parallax View", an immanent notion of the Real - a Real always encountered within the Symbolic order as its negative limit - requires faith that the Real upon which one acts is a dimension of the "pre-symbolic X" from which that Symbolic order emerges, so that one's act bears the potential of opening thought to a greater fullness of being. (Zizek 2006: 390 n. 21) The 'faith' that Zizek terms a groundless "methodological idealism" goes beyond the Pauline faith that calls for acts without the support of any "big Other". This idealism is rather the faith, corraborated only fragmentarily and indirectly via practical experiment, that reality is structured in this manner - the condition of possibility of the specific Pauline faith-act that trusts this or that identification with the not-All to be significant. This blindness of act is redoubled insofar as Zizek additionally remains committed to the possibility of a singular act yet-to-come upon the immanent Real, which will radically reconfigure the Symbolic order: for without such an act being performed, without successful instances of re-ordering the Symbolic, there is no evidence that reality is so ordered. And, unless Zizek makes an appeal however implicitly to the kind of theological horizon of "Otherness" for which he criticizes Derridean messianicity (Zizek 2003: 140), he must accept a deep 'blindness' of act, which threatens to undermine its claim to be ethical no less than the naivety of the twin's act threatens to undermine their ethical stance in "The Notebook".
- John McSweeney, "The Cold Cruelty of Ethics: Zizek, Kristof and Reflexive Subjectivation"
London Grammar, "Wasting My Young Years"
- h/t: Jen Nifer

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