Terry Eagleton (In Disguise) On Terror, State and More

A better quality for download can be found here. Eagleton speaking in Manchester (in September) – what is this thing about him being “forced into retirement”?

How To Lie Well: Palin Pity (Updated)

With all the Palin pity going around, especially on the conservative side, I would like to make a suggestion – Palin should not “be herself,” as some suggest, and try to wing it in the answers to the difficult questions, she should just take the whole process literally and honestly, i.e. respond what she really thinks, even if it is a simple “I dont’ know” – this way, at least according to the point that Žižek’s been emphasizing lately, she will be reacting to the system of journalistic interrogation literally, and will thus challenge the implicit rule of such an interrogation which is: Whether you know the answer or not, we want to see you try.  Now, you might ask, how exactly does this fill in the theme of “How To Lie Well” series? Let’s hear Žižek’s point first – this is from the small book on violence: Continue reading

Pelosi Hurts Feelings, Mentions A Party I Was Not Invited To, Claims It Is Now Over…

Republicans in the Congress get offended by Pelosi’s “partisan” speech, cry like babies, press wrong “Nay” buttons:

Seriously, these people need to spend more time discussing their excuses – who comes out and openly states: “We wanted to help the country, but mean Nancy was all over the Republican administration so we decided to vote against the bill out of spite?” And now angry John McCain comes out and says: “It’s all Obama’s fault” and “Now it’s not the time to blame” almost in the same sentence – how ridiculous is this? [Note to self: get more popcorn]

Žižek Might Do Opera.

A short interview with Žižek in San Francisco Chronicle – my favorite part:

Q: What’s your favorite among your books?

A: “The Indivisible Remainder.” It’s a pure comparison of Schelling and others. … Then there is the one I really did from my heart, “Opera’s Second Death,” co-written with my friend Mladen Dolar. … Michael Nyman signaled through friends that maybe he would like to do an opera that I write. I have an idea, but I don’t think he’ll go for it, it’s too crazy – to re-do “Antigone” with three alternate endings.

Opera’s Second Death is a sort of a cool book, I mean it’s just two long essays and it’s a bit unbalance since Dolar’s essay is sort of very different from Žižek’s – but I think if Žižek wrote a libretto for an opera, it might be a new venue to say basically the same things for him. Although this short Violence book mentioned in the article is a pretty easy read, I thought.

And, of course, the long-awaited political analysis: Continue reading

CFP: 11th International Kant Congress

UPDATE: For some inexplicable reason, American Society for Aesthetics, has a link to my copy of the announcement on its official website, just in case there’s any confusion, please go to the official CFP here.

During the general meeting held in Mainz on 22 October 2005 the Kant-Gesellschaft e.V. has authorized the Società Italiana di Studi Kantiani to organize in collaboration with the University of Pisa the 11th International Kant Congress in Pisa, Italy. The congress will take place from 22 to 26 May 2010. The official languages of the congress are German, English, French, and Italian. The congress will include plenary sessions featuring keynote speakers and parallel sessions followed by discussion. Simultaneous translation will be available for plenary sessions.

The general topic of the congress is “Kant and Philosophy in a Cosmopolitan Sense“. This topic refers to the “cosmopolitan concept” (Weltbegriff, conceptus cosmicus) of philosophy. According to Kant, philosophy in a cosmopolitan sense concerns that which necessarily interests everyone. Philosophy in this sense is the “science of the relation of every cognition to the essential ends of human reason”. This cosmopolitan sense of philosophy provides the opportunity for reflection on the meaning and function of philosophy in its relation to every form of knowledge and to every aspect of human life. Continue reading

Michel Henry: Art and the Phenomenology of Life

Our friend over at However Fallible has translated a good deal of an interview with Michel Henry that touches on a range of issues about art, experience and phenomenology.  Read it from the beginning here. I found this exchange particularly interesting, especially Henry’s use of and discussion of Kandindky.

Q: In Material Phenomenology you analyze the “invisible phenomenological substance” that is “the pathetic immediacy in which life experiences itself.” If, as you claim, life is “the principle of everything,” how can one envisage a phenomenology of the invisible or more exactly of the relation between the visible and invisible from the point of view of art? Related question, is the work of art visible or invisible, immanent or transcendant, objective or subjective, internal or external? Here we are referring to the phenomenological reflections of Roman Ingarden.

MH: The questions that you have posed are my questions… Marx says somewhere that Humanity only asks questions that it can answer. I would say, in all modesty, that insofar as being a philosopher working outside of the paths followed by modern thought, I have been in a precarious position in relation to what I have wanted to say, namely it has been very difficult for me to find the conceptual means to express a wholly other phenomenology. A phenomenology sure, but wholly other since my understanding of appearing is not only the appearing of the world, but pathetic givenness, pathetic revelation. Continue reading

John McCain Goes To Washington: The Great Undecider!

Ok, so just took a quick look at how the economy is going and how the great McCain is saving us all from the crisis – I mean he’s there in DC doing his thing and all – New York Times reports:

“We’re in a serious economic crisis,” Mr. Bush told reporters as the meeting began shortly before 4 p.m. in the Cabinet Room, adding, “My hope is we can reach an agreement very shortly.”

But once the doors closed, the smooth-talking House Republican leader, John A. Boehner of Ohio, surprised many in the room by declaring that his caucus could not support the plan to allow the government to buy distressed mortgage assets from ailing financial companies.

Mr. Boehner pressed an alternative that involved a smaller role for the government, and Mr. McCain, whose support of the deal is critical if fellow Republicans are to sign on, declined to take a stand.

Come again? Yes, you’ve read it right – let me repeat it – “…and Mr. McCain, whose support of the deal is critical if fellow Republicans are to sign on, DECLINED TO TAKE A STAND.” This is what I am talking about! Is it just me or is this election just about the best thing ever?