After reading Christian Lorentzen's account of a Žižek's signing in my village (Manhattan), I'm still wondering whether he has become what he despises the most: a less posh version of BHL (Bernard-Henri Lévy). The conclusion may be that one should solely read his work and shut down whatever else he does and says because it is meaningless theater. Sugary excerpt:
A long line of fans formed around the stage at Cooper Union to have Slavoj Zizek sign books. They rattled off their names for the philosopher's dedication.
"Ian," said one.
"Like the writer," said Mr. Zizek, "McEwan."
"Kelvin," said another.
"Like the stupid temperature."
"Austin," said a third.
"Anna," said a fourth, "with two n's. I'm from Denmark."
"Denmark," said Mr. Zizek. "I like Denmark because secretly I am a fascist. Keep the trains running on time. It's the only way to stop Hitler!"
"Gideon," said a fifth.
"He was a warrior. Paul Robeson, the greatest American leftist singer, has a song about him."
"Elias," said a sixth.
"Did you see the terrible movie Denzel Washington made about the Bible?" Mr. Zizek asked. "The Book of Eli?"
"Chris," said a seventh.
"Are you Christ without the t?"
The celebrity radical had just barreled through 90 minutes of his trademark political paradoxes, pulling his beard, wiping his brow and waving his fist in the air. "Today it is capitalism that is revolutionary. ... The impossible and the possible are exploding into excess. I am told that here in New York a man can have his penis cut in two. ... So you can do it with two women. You can achieve immortality. You can go into space. But maintaining a little bit of health care is impossible."