In the Beginning...Was the Act!: Zizek, Marx, and the Question of Form
Flemming, Gregory C.
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In almost all commentary on the work Slavoj iek the question of his relationship to the thought of Karl Marx is either ignored or indirectly addressed in terms of his relationship to contemporary thinkers. This is best exemplified in discussions of what is ieks most significant contribution to todays growing swell of left-wing political theory: the critique of ideology. Against those who find its root elsewhere and who consequently offer various critiques of the positions iek takes, understanding the root of ideology to be the material practice of commodity exchange enables one to see the overall coherence of his work. After differentiating ieks position from many of his contemporaries and arguing that ieks parallax view can be best understood as a development of Marxs commodity fetishism the author goes on to use this as a means to get at the idea of form as it appears in Marx and iek. On this basis the last half of the study takes up contemporary history and theory on the formation of psychoanalytic associations and radical party politics to substantiate the claim that while both owe their existence to capitalism, capitalism could owe to them its destruction.