Lady Gaga and Slavoj Zizek?
Lady Gaga has been spending time with internationally known philosopher Slavoj Žižek, if you can believe the heated headlines of the New York Post. Lady Gaga is even more widely known, a pop-culture one-woman phenomenon of singing, dancing and crazy out fits. Žižek, a lively philosopher and theorist, is a critic who often turns his attention to pop culture.
And when it comes to pop culture, where else to turn but Lady Gaga?
The New York Post writes:
Sources say Gaga and Slovenian-born Zizek -- who like Salman Rushdie seems to be intellectual catnip to beautiful women and who was once married to Argentine model Analia Hounie -- spent time together discussing feminism and collective human creativity. The pop star also agreed to support Zizek at a March rally in London when the lecturers' union UCU was on strike.
In a recent blog post titled "Communism Knows No Monster," Zizek called Gaga "my good friend" and said, "There is a certain performance of theory in her costumes, videos and even (some of) her music." He says her infamous meat dress is a reference to "the consistent linking in the oppressive imaginary of the patriarchy of the female body and meat, of animality and the feminine."
The New York Post calls Žižek a Marxist, but his thinking, while leftist, is more complex than the label implies. His most recent English-language books are "Hegel and the Infinite: Religion, Politics, and Dialectic" (2011) and "Paul's New Moment: Continental Philosophy and the Future of Christian Theology," "The Idea of Communism," "Living in the End Times" and "Philosophy in the Present," all published in 2010.
As for the other implication -- that Lady Gaga's connection with him was somehow romantic -- Žižek told the New York Post, "I am terribly sorry to disappoint you, but this is all a fake! The only thing I share with her is the support for the [London lecturers' union] strike."
Sometimes a meeting of the minds is confluence enough.
-- Carolyn Kellogg
Photo: Lady Gaga performs. Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times