Renowned Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek participated in the Global Öcalan Books Day campaign, captivating audiences with his interpretation of Abdullah Öcalan’s text, “How to live, what to do, where to start”. Žižek, known for his insightful and often unconventional perspectives, expressed deep admiration for Öcalan’s work, considering it a beacon of “metaphysical beauty”.
Philosopher Slavoj Žižek joins Global Öcalan Books Day, praising Abdullah Öcalan’s work as a “metaphysical beauty”. Žižek explores the core of contemporary subjectivity issues in Öcalan’s text.https://t.co/bMxzpjQOGW #OcalanBooksDay | #Žižek | #AbdullahOcalan pic.twitter.com/JyRX1JJyXu
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“This text directly addresses the basic problem of us all today. Where do we stand with our subjectivity?” Žižek said in the video.
Žižek emphasised the significance of Öcalan’s text in addressing the contemporary challenge of navigating individuality within a seemingly individualistic yet homogeneous society. “We live in a system that presents itself as individualistic, each of us should live a unique life, not like others. But beneath this vain, empty diversity, there is a rather boring resemblance,” Žižek remarked.
The philosopher delved into Öcalan’s metaphor of “vomiting the system”, clarifying that it doesn’t advocate the destruction of reality but rather encourages individuals to liberate themselves at the core of their subjectivity from the existing ideological coordinates. Žižek believes that Öcalan’s text provides precise coordinates for understanding one’s place in the world and breaking free from the accepted norms.
Öcalan Books Day, commemorating the political writings of Öcalan, the incarcerated leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), has witnessed global participation since 10 December. Events across several countries saw public readings of excerpts from Öcalan’s extensive literary work, aiming to secure his release and promote a peaceful solution to the Kurdish conflict in Turkey.