The problem of the finite human mind attempting to grasp the Absolute is an old problem that was recognised – in Frühromantik, for example – as an antinomy, being on the one hand a logical impossibility and on the other, an ethical necessity (or at least, imperative). Friedrich Schlegel’s ‘romantic’ response to this deadlock was
By now we are all familiar, or should be, with neoliberalism. We know it is essentially a form of capitalism in which certain parts of the state are privatised, either overtly or in effect; in which the role of social development is given over to business leaders and private investment, and key state services are
The visibility of the ideological state apparatus does not remain constant but ebbs and flows. Its visibility is particularly heightened, argues Richard Seymour, when something challenges it.
I remember the 1980s vividly, particularly the culture. During that time, swathes of the British population tried to present themselves as intensely self-interested. People went out of their way to convince you not only of how selfish they were, but of how selfish was the human being as such.
It’s interesting that the Labour Party line at present is essentially Thatcherite anti-democracy: even if the people want anti-austerity, it cannot be offered to them; there is no alternative. This effectively positions the Labour party (insofar as it is strangulated by New Labour elements and the catachrestically named ‘Progress’ think-tank) to the right of even
If the complex situation in which an already self-contradictory Syriza managed to hem itself, together with all the impositions of the Eurozone, were to be distilled into a simple ideological message it would be, as Richard Seymour captured it: ‘this is what you get for giving the creditors lip’. One can palpably touch the thick
The IMF report on austerity and debt reduction has attracted a fair bit of attention, largely because it suggest the UK’s austerity is unnecessary. But this misses the other side of austerity. Because the UK’s financial system is at an exceptional risk of systemic failure, there is a compelling need to clear what the authors
Recently I came across this quote from Leo Bersani, which backs up a feeling I have been expressing for some time now: If psychoanalysis were to have an innovative role in a Foucauldian genealogy of the human subject in Western societies, it would not be because it explains our nature in terms of our sexuality
It irks me no end to see Yanis Varoufakis, the Greek ‘Finance Minister’ under Syriza, persistently referred to in the press — even on the left — as a game-theorist, when his published position on game theory is very far from being an uncritical endorsement.
I don’t like it when others write in an overly gnomic way, so I suppose I should resist the temptation as well.