Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

I Think One of Us Is Doing This Wrong

with 2 comments

Despite having written about it, Žižek now says he hasn’t actually seen Avatar. But take heart, true believers:

Žižek promises that he will see the film and then write a Stalinist ‘self-criticism’.

Written by gerrycanavan

April 14, 2010 at 10:02 am

2 Responses

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  1. I think it depends what you’re trying to do with the film. If you’re trying to get at the ideological “kernel” of the film, then you’re probably better off not seeing it and being taken in by its excesses. However, if you believe, as McLuhan said, that the “medium is the message,” then, contra Zizek, you should probably see the film in order to give your critique. But Zizek almost dogmatically adheres to plot-critique when he’s analyzing films, anyway, and usually he views them as instances, not as exceptional articulations. I would say that the way he goes about it works from that standpoint.


    April 14, 2010 at 11:37 am

  2. Personally, I don’t believe that a plot summary alone will ever approximate the experience of watching a film (or the experience of reading a novel), and the fact that people who have an axe to grind think that’s an appropriate way to engage with art makes me pretty angry.

    I didn’t like Žižek’s piece to begin with, and now I see that its air of dishonesty sprang more directly from his writing process than I ever would have suspected.


    April 15, 2010 at 5:39 pm

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