Τετάρτη, 4 Μαΐου 2011

Revolution at the Gates: Zizek on Lenin, the 1917 Writings


About the book

The idea of a Lenin renaissance might well provoke an outburst of sarcastic laughter. Marx is OK, but Lenin? Doesn't he stand for the big catastrophe which left its mark on the entire twentieth century? Lenin, however, deserves more profound consideration than this, and his writings of 1917 are testament to a formidable political figure, revealing as they do his ability to grasp the significance of an extraordinary moment in history. Everything is here, from Lenin-the-ingenious-revolutionary strategist to Lenin-of-the-enacted-utopia. To use Kierkegaard's phrase, what we can glimpse in these writings is Lenin-in-becoming: not yet Lenin-the-Soviet-institution, but Lenin thrown into an open, contingent situation. In Revolution at the Gates, Slavoj Zizek locates the 1917 writings in their historical context, while his extensive Afterword tackles the key question of whether Lenin can be reinvented in our era of 'cultural capitalism,' Zizek is convinced that, whatever the discussion--the forthcoming crisis of capitalism, the possibility of a redeeming violence, the falsity of liberal tolerance--Lenin's time has come again.

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