Mladen Dolar

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Publishere-flux2012
On some days it is more apparent than others that the ground is shifting below our feet. On a clear day, we can see the horizon that tells us we are in the midst of a global regime change, yet we do not yet know the face of the new power just beyond it. But what we can see is the limit of an economic regime that has dangled vast advances in symbolic spheres of information and communication, in capital flows and even human movement across the globe. Perhaps it was only a matter of time before we realized the ...
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Publishere-flux2012
Beyond performative resistance and melancholic complicity with the existing order, a crucial strategy emerged in the 1980s from a collective of artists in Yugoslavia who used complicity as its most lethal weapon. Inke Arns and Slavoj Žižek have respectively described the activities of NSK (Neue Slowenische Kunst) and its sub-groupings (the band Laibach and the artist collective IRWIN, and Scipion Našice Sisters Theatre, among others) variously in terms of over-identification or subversive affirmation, as performing the “hidden reverse” of state ideology. From Laibach’s nationalism in drag to the issuing of a passport for an imagined “NSK state,” NSK is perhaps ...
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In the summer of 2007 three artists from Slovenia legally changed their names to “Janez Janša,” the name of the right-wing Prime Minister at that time. Since then, the artists have presented their works as performances, exhibitions and a film documentary, and have continued with their investigation of “What’s in a name?” Starting from this famous Shakespearian question, four eminent European philosophers – Austrian Robert Pfaller and Slovenians Mladen Dolar, Jela Krečič and Slavoj Žižek – confront the implications of the Janšas’ name change and its consequences in four essays. Ten years of artistic and real life activity, here illustrated by ...
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PublisherRe.Press2013
Umbr(a) was one of the most important US theory journals of the 1990s and early 2000s, publishing work by some of the greatest philosophers, psychoanalysts and theorists of our era. In every regard, it was ahead of the curve – in content, design, and style – often introducing thinkers who have subsequently become globally influential.
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A name always bears a symbolic mandate. As soon as false pretenders appear, questions arise as to the symbolic mandate’s power, its validity and justification. Names refer to genealogies, yet thereby always involve a certain distribution of power. To arrogate a name is to arrogate power. There is a claim to power in every name, in assuming the social role that goes with it, in transmitting symbolic legacy, in social impact, in genealogical inscription. The story of false pretenders entails the moment of bemusement – one’s feeling that, really, one is always a false pretender, as there’s no way one ...

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