Simon Critchley’s Page of Dead Philosophers
“I have argued that philosophy doesn’t begin in wonder or in the fact that things are, it begins in a realization that things are not what they might be. It begins with a sense of a lack, of something missing, and that provokes a series of questions.”
— Simon Critchley

Simon Critchley: Disaffected by a politics that only serves power, the people are reclaiming democracy. (March 2012 Guardian article)http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/mar/22/occupy-arab-spring-political-protest

 


 

Postanarchism and Radical Politics Today by Saul Newman
“a spectre is haunting radical political thought, the spectre of anarchism”
pg1 of 29:
In a recent series of exchanges between Slavoj Žižek and Simon Critchley, the spectreof anarchism has once again emerged. In querying Critchley’s proposal in his recentbook, Infinitely Demanding 1 , for a radical politics that works outside the state—that take its distance from it—
Žižek says: The ambiguity of Critchley’s position resides in a strange non sequitur: if thestate is here to stay, if it is impossible to abolish it (or capitalism), why retreatfrom it? Why not act with(in) the state?…. Why limit oneself to a politics which,as Critchley puts it, ‘calls the state into question and calls the established orderto account, not in order to do away with the state, desirable though that might bein some utopian sense, but in order to better it or to attenuate its maliciouseffects’? These words simply demonstrate that today’s liberal-democratic stateand the dream of an ‘infinitely demanding’ anarchic politics exist in arelationship of mutual parasitism: anarchic agents do the ethical thinking, andthe state does the work of running and regulating society.
Instead of working outside the state, Žižek claims that a more effective strategy—such as that pursued by the likes of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela—is to grasp statepower and use its machinery ruthlessly to achieve one’s political objectives. In otherwords, if the state cannot be done away with, then why not use it for revolutionaryends?
One hears echoes of the old Marx-Bakunin debate that split the First International in the 1870s: the controversy of what to do about the state—whether toresist and abolish it, as the anarchists believed, or to utilise it, as Marxists and, later,Marxist-Leninists believed—has returned to the forefront of radical political theorytoday.
The question is why, at this political juncture, has this dilemma become important, indeed vital, again?

Simon Critchley; Slavoj Žižek, et al…

 

 

 

Advertisements

Comments are closed.