Steve Pyke’s new set of photographs of philosophers contains one of Slavoj Zizek. Clicking on it gives one a larger version of the photograph and the following quote:
I HATE philosophy, but I cannot find peace if I do not get rid of a
philosophical problem. Philosophy is for me like women: they are
impossible, but it is even more difficult without them. I am only
happy between the writing of two books – then I relax… and start
thinking of philosophy.
Of course Zizek, who is very often said to be charismatic and brilliant, is really out of anyone’s control, apparently. I don’t see this fact, though, as mitigating anything.
In academia we are particularly concerned with free speech, and that concern seems particularly appropriate now as many universities see corporations as providing good models. But does this mean it is permissible to propagate the remarks of a bigot?
I’ve used strong words and I haven’t taken account of the fact that Zizek’s words may have been uttered in a context that lessens or changes the impact of what he’s said. Nonetheless, as the words are conveyed, all that is lost if it was ever present.
Perhaps, though, we should say that the quote provides a salutory warning to students: Avoid this guy!
What do you think?
(Thanks to SD for the info.)