Slavoj Žižek

Slavoj Žižek is perhaps the most high-profile philosopher and cultural theorist in the world today. His current status as radical leftist commentator and gnomic philosophical guru marks the mid-point of an unlikely journey for someone who made his name as a dissident within the Slovenian communist regime and a centrist candidate for president in the 1990 election. His constant use of cultural references, jokes and puns accompany a potent mixture of Hegelian metaphysics, Lacanian psychoanalysis, and Marxist dialectic in order to challenge the conventional wisdom and accepted verities of the liberal democratic capitalist order. His controversial invocations of the communist past and calls for 'socialism with a human face' have variously attracted the ire and admiration of many, and his talent for provocation continues to attract attention. Žižek rose to fame in the late 1980s and early 90s with his book The Sublime Object of Ideology and has since produced a prodigious body of work ranging from dense works of philosophy to polemical tracts and topical interventions. Polity has published half a dozen of Žižek's works, including Demanding the Impossible, The Most Sublime Hysteric and The Relevance of the Communist Manifesto.