Slavoj Žižek on Cuba and Yugoslavia

Q: You’ve lived through the Cold War the, fall of the Soviet Union, the disintegration of Yugoslavia – did you think that in 2016 there would still be a Castro in power in Havana? Slavoj Žižek: No, I didn’t. But let me add two points. First, you know there are so many surprises, for me the big surprise was not that communism disintegrated in 1990. People usually say who would have imagined this happen even[ …]

A Marxist for Trump

[Note: The embed feature of vice.com does not seem to work correctly; link to video is provided below the transcript.]  Slavoj Žižek: I think it’s totally wrong to say Trump is really a dangerous right-wing fundamentalist. No. He is nothing. He is an opportunist, the way I see it. Narrated: Slavoj Žižek is Slovenian philosopher, Marxist, and celebrity intellectual whose sharp criticism of mass culture and politics have made him the ‘Elvis of cultural theory’.[ …]

The Left’s Fidelity to Castro-ation

I am critical of Cuba not because I am anti-Communist but because I remain a Communist. We all remember the classic scene from cartoons: a cat walks over the precipice and magically goes on, floating in the air—it falls down only when it looks down and becomes aware that it has no ground under its feet. In the same way, one can say that, in the last decades, Cuban “socialism” continued to live only because[ …]

Why There Are No Viable Political Alternatives to Unbridled Capitalism

[Transcript below video.] I still believe in the saying of this old Frankfurt School fellow traveler Marxist Walter Benjamin who said that behind every rise of fascism there is a failed revolution. I think that even if we strategically, I’m not sure about it, accept this term Islam0-fascism for Islamic fundamentalists, this so called Islamic fundamentalism is strictly relative with the disintegration of secular Islamic left, which was pretty strong in the ’50s, ’60s and[ …]

Slavoj Žižek on Castro’s death (+ transcript)

[Transcript below video.] RT: Joining me live now here on the programme on RT International Slavoj Žižek – a philosopher and international director at the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities. Great to see you today. Thanks for coming on the programme. Let’s discuss the breaking news here, Mr. Žižek, that over the death of Fidel Castro, the age of 90. Socialist ideas seem to be gaining traction around the world. Take the rise of Bernie[ …]

Electing Trump will ‘shake up’ the system, Interview with Mehdi Hasan

[Partial transcript below the video.] Mehdi Hasan: Slavoj Žižek, thanks for joining me on UpFront. Leftist, socialist, liberals, progressives all over the world, even moderate conservatives, are mourning the victory of Donald Trump. And yet you, one of the world’s best-known leftist philosophers, best-known Marxists, said you wanted him to win and you would have voted for him if you could. What on earth were you thinking? Surely, you must regret saying that now. Slavoj[ …]

Slavoj Žižek on why Trump won, interview with RT

[Transcript below video] Machine of manufacturing consent no longer works. 10 years from now, and it’s not a joke, I claim, rape will be called ‘well, why not enhanced seduction technique.’ I think Trump is disgusting, like, you know, with Trump I become a racist. It will a kind of big awakening – new political processes will be set in motion. Without further ado, let’s talk to the man himself. Slavoj Zizek joins us live[ …]

Slavoj Žižek on the US Elections and SYRIZA

[Transcript below video] For me the victory of Trump is the big return of the repressed of the academic left  – class struggle came back, in the sense of class tension. I hope that, precisely because it is a horror, that it, on the left, will break this Clinton consensus, which was not a real consensus. The price of this consensus was the neutralisation of Bernie Sanders. I hope it will revitalise a little bit[ …]

Trump Against the Machine: How Political Elites Failed

[Transcript below video.] Slavoj Žižek: I know that even in the United States when you have someone like Donald Trump, I know that there is a lot of elitist liberal reaction. Like here we see the limit of democracy but in the wrong sense, in the sense that you see stupid ordinary people are seduced and so on and so on. Well, although Noam Chomsky doesn’t like me very much, I admire him sincerely and[ …]