Slavoj Žižek (b. 1949)
Slavoj Zizek is that rarity, an internationally famous philosopher, and one who has built a career out of telling his audience things they probably don’t want to hear. Embracing a world view that blends Marxism with the teachings of Jacques Lacan, Zizek’s work obsesses on how capitalism affects the way we think and function in our society, and how this is reflected in everything from pop psychology to plumbing. Zizek’s writings have won him a sizable following in the United States, and he’s been described as an “academic rock star” in Europe, where his lectures frequently attract sell-out crowds. Filmmaker Astra Taylor followed Slavoj Zizek as he traveled across Europe, South America, and the United States on a speaking tour, and Zizek! captures the man as his mind and tongue both run in fifth gear while he encounters his fans and followers on- and off-stage. Taylor also interviews Zizek off-stage and he offers his thoughts on his public persona, his fame, his reputation among other academics, and his young son’s fondness for eating at McDonald’s. Zizek! received its North American premiere at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival.