notion of race is routinely invoked in contemporary academia while at
the same time its analysis is dissipated across a range of disciplines
and topics so that it seems it has either no critical coherency or else
its orthodoxy is assumed such that the racial reading is always already
predictable in advance. This creates the paradoxical situation whereby
racism in its numerous and mutating modalities is rampant globally, yet
the concept of race or racism is hardly examined directly at all.
Identity, culture, ethnicity, difference, diaspora, multicultural are
the metonymic chain of equivalences that arguably invite a post-racial,
post-political understanding of racism, with the possible effect of
leaving racisms to operate in new configurations, even in the guise of
anti-racism. Does the critical work of Slavoj Žižek offer a cogent and
sustained theoretical and political intervention beyond this impasse?
A striking aspect of Žižek's output has been his consistent
interrogation of various forms of racism, nationalism and
anti-Semitism. So far there been little direct commentary on this
aspect of his work in the ever growing body of secondary literature.
This special issue of the on-line International Journal of Žižek
will examine the critique of racism across Žižek's corpus addressing
to what extent Žižek offers a distinctive understanding of the workings
of race that is essential to the contemporary geo-political context,
and the ways his approach can be further mobilised in political
analysis of race, media and culture now. In particular, this issue
invites papers examining Žižek's analysis of racism, nationalism and
imperialism through Lacanian psychoanalysis, dialectical materialism
and ideological critique; the critique of liberal democracy,
multiculturalism, cultural studies, postcolonialism and neo-liberal
global capitalism; and his commitment to a praxis of universalism,
anti-racism and Marxism.