Friday, June 21, 2013

"In an outstanding reading of Walter Benjamin's 'Theses on the Philosophy of History', Eric Santner elaborates Benjamin's notion that a present revolutionary intervention repeats/redeems past failed attempts: the 'symptoms' - past traces which are retroactively redeemed through the 'miracle' of the revolutionary intervention - are 'not so much forgotten deeds, but rather forgotten failures to act, failures to suspend the force of social bond inhibiting acts of solidarity with society's "others"':

symptoms register not only past failed revolutionary attempts but, more modestly, past failures to respond to calls for action or even for empathy on behalf of those whose suffering in some sense belongs to the form of life of which one is a part. They hold the place of something that is there, that insists in our life, though it has never achieved full ontological consistency. Symptoms are thus in some sense the virtual archives of voids - or, perhaps, better, defenses against voids - that persist in historical experience."
-Slavoj Žižek, Welcome to the Desert of the Real

No comments:

Post a Comment