Books/Slavoj Zizek/A Little Piece of the Real

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‘Slavoj Žižek: A Little Piece of the Real’ by Matthew Sharpe


Slavoj Žižek has emerged as the pre-eminent European cultural theorist of the last decade and has been described as the ultimate Marxist/Lacanian cultural studies scholar. His large and growing body of work has generated considerable controversy, yet his texts are not structured as standard academic tomes. In Slavoj Žižek: A Little Piece of the Real, Matthew Sharpe undertakes the difficult task of drawing out an evolving argument from all of Žižek’s texts from 1989 to 2001, and reads them as the bearers of a single theoretical project, providing an authoritative, reliable, clearly written and well-structured account of Žižek’s demanding body of work. From an exposition of Žižek’s social and philosophical critical theory the book moves to a critical analysis of Žižek’s theoretical project and its political implications. Sharpe concludes by suggesting that Žižek’s work, however, raises as many questions as it answers; questions both about Žižek’s theoretical system and to the wider new Left in today’s world.