"My affluent business-oriented colleagues always marvel at how much work I put into theory and, comparatively, how little I earn … “How stupid you are to deal with theory!”
what … lurks behind is envy: the idea that, since I am not doing it for money (or power), and since they do not understand the reason I am doing it, there must be some strange jouissance, … satisfaction … accessible only to me"
- Slavoj Žižek (via alterities)
"Lacan played all possible variations … of Descartes: ‘I am not where I think’. Then … ‘I do not think where I am’. The unconscious is the thought without being, not being itself."
- s. zizek (via alterities)
"This morning, for the first time in a long time, the joy again of imagining a knife twisted in my heart."
- Franz Kafka, from Diaries (via kafkaesque-world)
"…throw roses into the abyss and say: ‘here is my thanks to the monster who didn’t succeed in swallowing me alive.’"
— Friedrich Nietzsche (via fuckyeahexistentialism)
"Our resistance to the scandalous command to love ourselves is in Lacan’s view a resistance to being confronted with our own terrifying jouissance, as we sense ‘some form of intolerable cruelty’ on the horizon."
- Terry Eagleton (via jujutsu-with-zizek)
What is problematic is much less Marx than our reading of Marx. Every generation has created — and has to create its appropriate Marxism, starting from the needs for it. This is one of the reasons why crises are a regular component of the life of Marxism. It has always been short-sighted to mistake the crisis of a historically specific formation of Marxism for the ultimate Crisis of Marxism as such. That is why the rule is:
Marxism is dead — long live Marxism.
W.F. Haug - Learning the Dialectics of Marxism [x]
Love Haug so much.
You are horrified at our intending to do away with private property. But in your existing society, private property is already done away with for nine-tenths of the population; its existence for the few is solely due to its non-existence in the hands of those nine-tenths. You reproach us, therefore, with intending to do away with a form of property, the necessary condition for whose existence is the non-existence of any property for the immense majority of society.
In one word, you reproach us with intending to do away with your property. Precisely so; that is just what we intend.
- Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, The Communist Manifesto (via heteroglossia)
"Neither Moses nor Kant proclaimed emotion; their icy law knew neither love nor sacrificial pyres. Nietzsche’s attack on monotheism dealt a heavier blow to Christian than to Jewish doctrine. While he repudiated the Law he pledged himself to the ‘higher self’, a self no longer natural but more-than-natural. He wanted to replace God by the ‘Overman’ because monotheism, in its broken, Christian form, had transparently become mythology. But just as, in the service of this higher self, the old ascetic ideals are extolled by Nietzsche as self-overcoming in the interest of developing ‘dominant power’, so the higher self turns out to be a desperate attempt to rescue the God who was dead. In this, Nietzsche renews Kant’s endeavour to transform the divine law into an autonomous principle, to rescue European civilisation from giving up the ghost in English scepticism. Kant’s principle: ‘that everything be done from the maxim of one’s will as a will that could at the same time have as its object itself as giving universal law’, is also the secret of the Overman. His will is no less despotic than the categorical imperative. Both principles aim at independence from external powers, at the unconditional freedom from tutelage which defines the essence of enlightenment. However, as the fear of falsehood, a fear which even in his most ‘enlightened’ moments Nietzsche decried as ‘a piece of Quixotism’, replaced the Law with self-legislation, so that everything was made transparent as one great unmasked superstition, enlightenment itself, indeed, truth in any form, became an idol, and we realise that ‘even we knowing ones of today, the godless and antimetaphysical, still take our fire from the conflagration kindled by a belief millenia old, the Christian belief, which was also the belief of Plato, that God is truth, that the truth is divine.’ Science itself, therefore, is open to the same criticism as metaphysics. The denial of God contains an irresolvable contradiction; it negates knowledge itself."
- Max Horkheimer & Theodor Adorno, Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments, “Juliette or Enlightenment and Morality” (via wanderingwithhisshadow)
"Be careful when you cast out your demons that you don’t throw away the best of yourself."
- Friedrich Nietzsche, from Thus Spoke Zarathustra (via blue-voids)
"Because of their conception of the absolute, Schelling and Hegel believed they were justified in exempting their philosophy from much of Kant’s critique of metaphysics. The target of Kant’s critique - the victim of all the “amphibolies”, “paralogisms,” and “antinomies” - was the old metaphysics
of the Leibnizian-Wolffian school. But this metaphysics was
in the service of a deistic theology, which conceived of the absolute
as a supernatural entity existing beyond the sphere of nature.
Schelling and Hegel happily agreed with Kant that metaphysics in
this sense is indeed impossible. They had, however, a different diagnosis of its impossibility: it is not because the supernatural is unknowable, as Kant thought, but because the supernatural does not exist. All of Kant’s worries about the unknowability of the noumenal world were, in Schelling’s and Hegel’s view, simply the result of hypostasis, of conceiving of the absolute as if it were only a specific thing. If we conceive of the absolute in naturalistic terms,
Schelling and Hegel argue, then metaphysics does not require the
transcendent knowledge condemned by Kant. All that we then need
to know is nature herself, which is given to our experience."
FREDERICK C. BEISER - Introduction: Hegel and the problem of metaphysics
"The neoliberal state, despite claims to the contrary, wields strong planning powers, which it enacts through close collaboration with corporate and financial interests. No one should be fooled anymore by the democratic aura that neoliberals still hope to evoke when they claim that the market decides. The decision-making market in such statements is a euphemism, at best, for the forces of wealth, including the banks and financial powers, that wield formidable instruments of planning. They determine, for example, what software will be developed, what dams will be built, who will buy a house, and so forth."
- Hardt and Negri (Declaration)
"What does it mean to struggle against capital when capital has subjugated all of lived time, not only that of the working day, but all, all of it. Reproduction is like production, life is like work. At this level, to break with capital is to a prison break."
Negri, Antonio, Marx Beyond Marx: Lessons on the Grundrisse. Trans. Harry Cleaver, Michael Ryan, and Maurio Viano. Autonomedia / Pluto 1991, p.xvi
"What then is truth? A movable host of metaphors, metonymies, and; anthropomorphisms: in short, a sum of human relations which have been poetically and rhetorically intensified, transferred, and embellished, and which, after long usage, seem to a people to be fixed, canonical, and binding. Truths are illusions which we have forgotten are illusions- they are metaphors that have become worn out and have been drained of sensuous force, coins which have lost their embossing and are now considered as metal and no longer as coins."
- Nietzsche, “On Truth and Lies in a Nonmoral Sense” (via queertheoryissexy)