Slavoj Žižek Quotes

Why should I know Slavoj Žižek?

Slavoj Žižek is a Slovenian philosopher and self-described radical leftist and communist.

Born March 21, 1949

Books by Slavoj Žižek


Best 58 Quotes by Slavoj Žižek

“Cinema is the ultimate pervert art. It doesn't give you what you desire - it tells you how to desire.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Do not blame people and their attitudes: the problem is not corruption or greed, the problem is the system that pushes you to be corrupt. The solution is not, Main Street, not Wall Street, but to change the system where Main Street cannot function without Wall Street.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Fantasy is a means for an ideology to take its own failure into account in advance.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Friends told me that the latest trend, at least in Europe, is public sex. They showed me some clips, and they're terrifying. A couple enters a streetcar, half-full, simply takes a seat, undresses, and starts to do it. You can see from surprised faces that it's not staged. It's pure working-class suburb. But what's fascinating is that the people all look, and then they politely ignore it. The message is that even if you're together in public with people, it still counts as private space.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Happiness was never important. The problem is that we don't know what we really want. What makes us happy is not to get what we want. But to dream about it. Happiness is for opportunists. So I think that the only life of deep satisfaction is a life of eternal struggle, especially struggle with oneself. If you want to remain happy, just remain stupid. Authentic masters are never happy; happiness is a category of slaves.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Humanity is OK, but 99% of people are boring idiots.”

Slavoj Žižek

“I already am eating from the trash can all the time. The name of this trash can is ideology. The material force of ideology makes me not see what I am effectively eating.”

Slavoj Žižek

“I am a good Hegelian. If you have a good theory, forget about the reality.”

Slavoj Žižek

“I despise the kind of book which tells you how to live, how to make yourself happy! Philosophers have no good news for you at this level! I believe the first duty of philosophy is making you understand what deep shit you are in!”

Slavoj Žižek

“I think boredom is the beginning of every authentic act. Boredom opens up the space, for new engagements. Without boredom, no creativity. If you are not bored, you just stupidly enjoy the situation in which you are.”

Slavoj Žižek

“I think that the task of philosophy is not to provide answers, but to show how the way we perceive a problem can be itself part of a problem.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Ideology today is unfreedom which you sincerely personally experience as freedom.”

Slavoj Žižek

“If you have reasons to love someone, you don’t love them.”

Slavoj Žižek

“It is more satisfying to sacrifice oneself for the poor victim than to enable the other to overcome their victim status and perhaps become even more successful than ourselves.”

Slavoj Žižek

“It's bad if we are controlled, but if we're not, it can be even worse.”

Slavoj Žižek

“It's not the same thing: coffee without cream or coffee without milk.
What you don't get is part of the identity of what you get.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Love feels like a great misfortune, a monstrous parasite, a permanent state of emergency that ruins all small pleasures.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Love is what makes sex more than masturbation. If there is no love even if you are really with a partner you masturbate with a partner.”

Slavoj Žižek

“My big fear is that if I act the way I am, people will notice that there is nothing to see. So I have to be active all the time, covering up.”

Slavoj Žižek

“Nowadays, you can do anything that you want—anal, oral, fisting—but you need to be wearing gloves, condoms, protection.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The fact that a cloud from a minor volcanic eruption in Iceland—a small disturbance in the complex mechanism of life on the Earth—can bring to a standstill the aerial traffic over an entire continent is a reminder of how, with all its power to transform nature, humankind remains just another species on the planet Earth.”

Slavoj Žižek

Products by Slavoj Žižek

“The horror of Communism, Stalinism, is not that bad people do bad things — they always do. It's that good people do horrible things thinking they are doing something great.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The liberal idea of tolerance is more and more a kind of intolerance. What it means is 'Leave me alone; don't harass me; I'm intolerant towards your over-proximity.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The minimum necessary structuring ingredient of every ideology is to distance itself from another ideology, to denounce its other as ideology.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The more opera is dead, the more it flourishes.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The one measure of true love is: you can insult the other.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The problem for us is not are our desires satisfied or not. The problem is how do we know what we desire.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The threat today is not passivity, but pseudo-activity, the urge to 'be active', to 'participate', to mask the nothingness of what goes on.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The true ethical test is not only the readiness to save the victims, but also - even more, perhaps - the ruthless dedication to annihilating those who made them victims.”

Slavoj Žižek

“The way we, everyday people are addressed by social authority, whatever we call it - it's no longer telling us to 'sacrifice your life' for the British empire, for socialism, whatever. It's not. It's some kind of permissive bullshit basically. Society is telling us to be true to yourself, authentic, develop your potential, be kind to others. It's kind of what I ironically call a slightly enlightened Buddhist hedonism.”

Slavoj Žižek