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The Puppet and the Dwarf: The Perverse Core of Christianity (Short Circuits)by Slavoj Zizek
Synopses & Reviews
The worlds eyes are on Latin America as a place of radical political inspiration, offering alternatives to the neoliberal model. Religion Without Redemption examines the history of religious and political ideas in Latin America, in order to show how and why the continents politics and economics work as they do.
Martínez Andrade focuses on the central role of religion in the region and how it influences peoples interaction with changes in modern economics. Capitalism in Latin America, Martínez Andrade argues, has taken on religious characteristics, with places of worship—shopping malls and department stores—as well as its own prophets. This form of cultural religion is often contradictory in surprising ways: not only does it legitimate oppression, it can also be a powerful source of rebellion, unveiling a subversive side to the status quo. Religion Without Redemption advances the ideas of liberation theory, and challenges the provincialism to which many Latin American thinkers are usually consigned.
One of our most daring intellectuals offers a Lacanian interpretation of religion, finding that early Christianity was the first revolutionary collective.
Slavoj Zizek has been called an academic rock star and the wild man of theory; his writing mixes astonishing erudition and references to pop culture in order to dissect current intellectual pieties. In
Slavoj Zizek has been called andquot;an academic rock starandquot; and andquot;the wild man of theoryandquot;; his writing mixes astonishing erudition and references to pop culture in order to dissect current intellectual pieties. In The Puppet and the Dwarf he offers a close reading of today's religious constellation from the viewpoint of Lacanian psychoanalysis. He critically confronts both predominant versions of today's spirituality--New Age gnosticism and deconstructionist-Levinasian Judaism--and then tries to redeem the andquot;materialistandquot; kernel of Christianity. His reading of Christianity is explicitly political, discerning in the Pauline community of believers the first version of a revolutionary collective. Since today even advocates of Enlightenment like Jurgen Habermas acknowledge that a religious vision is needed to ground our ethical and political stance in a andquot;postsecularandquot; age, this book--with a stance that is clearly materialist and at the same time indebted to the core of the Christian legacy--is certain to stir controversy.
About the Author
Slavoj Zizek is a philosopher and cultural critic. He has published over thirty books, including Looking Awry, The Puppet and the Dwarf, and The Parallax View (these three published by the MIT Press).
Table of Contents
Foreword by Michael Löwy
Part One: Entelechies And Cathedrals
1: Civilising Paradigms And Colonial Atavisms: Power And Social Sciences
2: The Shopping Mall As The Paradigmatic Figure Of Necolonial Discourse. Racism And Power In Latin America.
Part Two: Utopia And Liberation
3: The Portentous Eclosion Of The Principle Of Hope: Ernst Bloch And Liberation
4: The Gun Powder Of The Dwarf: Unearthly Reflections On Contemporary Political Philosophy
5: Tendencies And Latencies Of Liberation Theology In The Twenty-First Century
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