Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Literature but Were Afraid to Ask Žižek
Russell Sbriglia
158 x 240 mm
Year of Publishing
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Orient BlackSwan

This work demonstrates the importance of Slavoj Žižek to literary criticism and theory. The contributors show how Žižek's practice of reading theory and literature through one another allows him to critique, complicate, and advance the understanding of Lacanian sychoanalysis and German Idealism, resulting in a rethinking of historicity and universality. His methodology has implications in the analysis of literature across historical periods, nationalities, and genres and can enrich theoretical frameworks ranging from aesthetics, semiotics, and psychoanalysis to feminism, historicism, postcolonialism, and ecocriticism. The contributors also offer Žižekian interpretations of a wide variety of texts including Geoffrey Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde and Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice. There is alsoan essay by Žižek on subjectivity in Shakespeare and Beckett. This bookaffirms Žižek's value to literary studies and also offers a rigorous model of Žižekian criticism.

Russell Sbriglia is Assistant Professor of English at Seton Hall University, New Jersey.

Acknowledgments ix
Introduction: Did Somebody Say Žižek and Literature? / Russell Sbriglia 1

Part I. Theory
1. Reading the Real: Žižeks Literary Materialism / Anna Kornbluh 35
2. Looking Awry: Žižeks Ridiculous Sublime / Shawn Alfrey 62
3. The Bankruptcy of Historicism: Introducing Disruption into Literary Studies / Todd McGowan 89
4. The Symptoms of Ideology Critique; or, How We Learned to Enjoy the Symptom and Ignore the Fetish / Russell Sbriglia 107
5. Concrete Universality and the End of Revolutionary Politics: A Žižekian Approach to Postcolonial Women s Writings / Jamil Khader 137
6. A Robot Runs through It: Žižek and Ecocriticism / Andrew Hageman 169

Part II. Interpretation
7. Shakespeare after Žižek: Social Antagonism and Ideological Exclusion in The Merchant of Venice / Geoff Boucher 195
8. Beyond Symbolic Authority: La petite fille qui aimait trop les allumettes and the Aesthetics of the Real / Louis-Paul Willis 222
9. Wake-Up Call: Žižek, Burroughs, and Fantasy in the Sleeper Awakened Plot / Daniel Beaumont 245
10. Courtly Love Hate Is Undead: Sadomasochistic Privilege in Chaucer s Troilus and Criseyde / Paul Megna 267
11. The Minimal Event: Subjective Destitution in Shakespeare and Beckett / Slavoj Žižek 290

Contributors 317
Index 321

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