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Žižek Studies

The Greatest Hits (So Far)

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Edited By David J. Gunkel and Paul A. Taylor

Žižek Studies: The Greatest Hits (So Far) assembles and presents the best work published in the field of Žižek Studies over the last ten years, providing teachers, students, and researchers with a carefully curated volume of leading-edge scholarship addressing the unique and sometimes eclectic work of Slovenian philosopher and cultural critic Slavoj Žižek. The chapters included in this collection have been rigorously tested in and culled from the (virtual) pages of the International Journal of Žižek Studies, a leading open access journal that began publication in 2007. The book is organized into three sections or subject areas where Žižek and his seemingly indefatigable efforts have had significant impact: philosophy, politics, and popular culture. As a "greatest hits," the book offers the long-time fan and uninitiated newcomer alike a comprehensive overview of the wide range of opportunity in the field of Žižek studies and a remarkable collection of truly interdisciplinary "hits" from a diverse set of innovative and accomplished writers.

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14. They Were Created by Man … and They Have a Plan: Subjective and Objective Violence in Battlestar Galactica and the War on Terror (Luke Howie)

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14. They Were Created by Man … and They Have a Plan: Subjective and Objective Violence in Battlestar Galactica and the War on Terror

Luke Howie

Monash University, Australia

Since tragedy, comedy, and light comedy fail to please him precisely because of their perfection, he turns to farce. The same phenomenon is repeated in other spheres. (Kierkegaard 1983, 158)

All this has happened before, and all of it will happen again. (The Book of Pythia in Johnson 2008, 181)

Repetition and Farce in the “War on Terror”

Tele-visual cultures have played a significant role in representing the meanings and consequences of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The re-imagined Battlestar Galactica (BSG) television series has been particularly influential in articulating a critical account of 9/11 and the so-called “War on Terror”. The re-imagined BSG regularly attracted over two million viewers each week when it was first aired (Gorman 2009) and it has been the impetus for a body of scholarly thought that should perhaps be described as Battlestar Galactica studies. More than anything, the re-imagined BSG is about 9/11. It is the story of the human race attempting to avoid an apocalypse at the hands of a race of robots called Cylons. Humans created Cylons to be a race of slaves, but they were self-aware and rebelled against their human masters. But this is only part of the story. There is a broader story with broader implications that belies both BSG...

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