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Speaker(s): Professor Slavoj Zizek
Chair: Dr Purna Sen

Recorded on 11 November 2014 at Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building

Critique of ideology should not begin with the critique of reality, but with the critique of our dreams. As Herbert Marcuse put it back in the 1960s, freedom (from ideological constraints, from the predominant mode of dreaming) is the condition of liberation. If we only change reality in order to realize our dreams, and do not change these dreams themselves, we sooner or later regress to old reality. The first act of liberation is therefore for us to become ruthless censors of our dreams.

Slavoj Zizek is a Hegelian philosopher, Lacanian psychoanalyst, and political activist. He is international director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities and the author of numerous books on dialectical materialism, critique of ideology and art, including Less Than Nothing, Living in the End Times, First as Tragedy, Then as Farce and The Year of Dreaming Dangerously. This event marks the publication of his new book, Trouble in Paradise: From the End of History to the End of Capitalism.

Purna Sen (@Purna_Sen) is Deputy Director of the Institute of Public Affairs at the LSE.

The Institute of Public Affairs (@LSEPubAffairs) is one of the world's leading centres of public policy. We aim to debate and address some of the major issues of our time, whether international or national, through our established teaching programmes, our research and our highly innovative public-engagement initiatives.

Credits: Tom Sturdy (Audio Post-Production), LSE AV Services (Audio Recording).

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