- Sophie Fiennes
- Slavoj Žižek
The controversial, sometimes baffling, yet always engaging cultural theorist Slavoj Žižek is again the subject of documentary filmmaker Sophie Fiennes, who along with the Slovenian philosopher piggybacks on their previous collaboration, The Pervert’s Guide to Cinema (2006), with an even deeper exegesis of film and its relationship to prevailing ideologies. Despite the nominal change in focus this time around, psychoanalyst extraordinaire Žižek is expressly interested in the ways in which ideology—that is, the consensus reality by which we all abide—shapes, defines, and deploys cinema as a propaganda machine of norms. Cinema provides, of course, a space in which any number of fantasies can be played out and, like Freud’s interest in and insistence on dreams as lenses of insight into the human psyche, can say as much about the societies in which they are produced as they can about the individuals who watch them. Žižek is thus attuned to the subliminal meanings of film as alternate realities, wherein lie our darkest desires and repressed memories. You may never look at your screen the same way again. Cosponsored with the Society for the Humanities.