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Slavoj Žižek’s dialectical materialist Marxism

Crich, Robert Adam 2015. Slavoj Žižek’s dialectical materialist Marxism. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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This thesis offers a systematic account of Žižek’s dialectical materialist Marxism that follows the development of his work from his initial Lacanian critique of Marxism and Stalinist totalitarianism, to his attempt to develop a new form of Communist politics including a conception of a Communist utopia. The core and overarching argument of this thesis is that Žižek develops his positions in response to three challenges that he confronts after the limitations of his previous radical democratic politics become evident. These are: an alternative to traditional Marxism and liberal democracy that continues to protect against repeating the errors of the former; an analysis of late-capitalism at libidinal, political and economic levels to explain new forms of ideology, the limitations of liberal democratic politics, and the continuing role of capitalism and class in our contemporary world; and, the reformulation of the Lacanian category of the Real in order to overcome the deadlock of the opposition between das Ding and lack and the political conservatism it produces. In the analysis of Žižek’s response to these challenges, I examine the tension that emerges between the Lacanian and Marxist dimensions of Žižek’s dialectical materialism and how he manages this tension in order to avoid returning to the problems associated with traditional Marxism.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Modern Languages
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Uncontrolled Keywords: Žižek dialectical materialist Marxism Lacanian critique Marxism Stalinist totalitarianism
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 15 June 2016
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2017 05:36

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