14 January 2011

Mere Formality

Žižek on Wikileaks, 'necessary' fictions, and the paradox of public space:

"There has been, from the outset, something about [WikiLeaks's] activities that goes way beyond liberal conceptions of the free flow of information. We shouldn’t look for this excess at the level of content. The only surprising thing about the WikiLeaks revelations is that they contain no surprises. Didn’t we learn exactly what we expected to learn? The real disturbance was at the level of appearances: we can no longer pretend we don’t know what everyone knows we know."

Full piece at the LRB.

Interestingly: The core of Žižek's piece is effectively an echo of what Umberto Eco's comments of weeks ago. But whereas Eco's thesis constituted little more than a cynical shrug, Žižek steers it in the direction of a substantive critique.

Here's to keeping up appearances.

{via biblioklept}

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