Poetry in Unusual Places: Part 9

18 Apr

It has been a while since I have been able to post any poetry in unusual places, but I think this will more than make up for it.

For a while in my home the work of Slavoj Zizek, has been held in high regard, while at the same time acknowledging that he is a man who is quite possibly slightly mad.

Zizek is a charismatic philosopher and cultural commentator, having also contributed to the fields of psychoanalysis as well as political and film theory.  One of the things that makes Zizek so remarkable as a thinker is his ability to link things that would appear to others unrelated.  His political thinking although complicated and dense is made easier to understand by the fact that he continually references western culture.  In one memorable film he uses a scene from Batman, in the Christian Bale era, to explain the flaws at the heart of liberalism.

Zizek disliked the culture in his native Slovenia as he felt it was far to influenced by the Communist Government.  He consequently rejected it’s literature and read only work written in English.  As a consequence Zizek’s writings are littered not only with reference to film, crime fiction and other culture, but also poetry.

It may not appear strange to many that a cultural commentator would quote poetry, however, in the four years at University when I was reading Media and Cultural Studies there was not one mention of poetry.  We watched a lot of The Simpson’s (which is almost compulsory when discussing postmodernism), a few good spaghetti westerns (gender studies), documentary films from the 1930’s (something to do with studying documentary films)  and read a lot of Raymond Chandler when studying Crime Fiction.  But never, ever as part of the reading of Cultural Studies, did we look at poetries part in our culture.

Thank you Slavoj.

If any other readers have found poetry in unusual places feel free to let me know mairisharratt@yahoo.co.uk.

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