FW: Zizek help

Carrol Cox cbcox at ilstu.edu
Sun May 6 09:09:59 PDT 2001

Guerino Calemine wrote:
> P.S. Somewhat relevant passage from Zizek's latest book, The Fragile
> Absolute, which I highly recommend:
> "So, when a critical Marxist encounters a bourgeois subject immersed in
> commodity fetishism, the Marxist's reproach to him is not 'A commodity may
> seem to you a magical object endowed with special powers, but really it is
> just a reified expression of relations between people'; the Marxist's actual
> reproach is, rather, 'You may think that the commodity appears to you as a
> simple embodiment of social relations (that, for example, money is just a
> kind of voucher entitling you to a part of the social product), but THIS IS
> NOT HOW THINGS REALLY SEEM TO YOU -- in your social reality, by means of
> your participation in social exchange, you bear witness to the uncanny fact
> that a commodity really appears to you as a magical object endowed with
> special powers' . . . "
> I see what Zizek is doing here, using Lacan to describe what Marxists
> (including himself, heh) are doing, to be USEFUL/HELPFUL!

And just how does this involve any dependence on Lacan? And what is uncanny about the fact? I see utterly no connection between this paragraph and _any_ psychological theory. I can only conclude that the primary purpose of psychological theory is to permit writers to repeat commonplaces in a way that makes them seem new and profound.


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