Having fun with Žižek

Let us ruminate over the following little speech by Slavoj Žižek:

You know, happiness is for me a very rebellious category. It enters the frame immediately. You have a serious ideological deviation at the very beginning of a famous proclamation of independence -- you know, happiness is overrated. If there is a point in psychoanalysis, it is that people do really want or desire happiness, and I think it’s not necessarily bad that it is like that.

For example, let’s be serious: when you are in a creative endeavor, in that wonderful fever --- “My God, I’m onto something!” and so on --- you're mimicking happiness. You are ready to relish the real thing. Sometimes scientists --- I read history of quantum physics or earlier of radiation --- were even ready to stomach the whole package, including the possibility that they will die because of some radiation and so on. Happiness is, for me, an amoral category.

And also, we may actually want to get what we think we don't want. The classical story that I like, the traditional monogamous scenario: I am married to a wife, relations with her are great, and I think I don't want a mistress, and all the time I dream, “Oh my God, how terrible if I had a mistress . . . ,” I’m not a saint, but let us say, “A new life is terrifying and a mistress would open up a new life for me.” You know what every psychoanalyst will tell you quite often happens? That then, for some reason, you have a mistress, you realize you have wanted a new life all along.

You thought, this is not what I want. When you had it there, you found out that it was a much less complex situation, where what you want is not really to love another woman but to keep her as an object of desire and nothing more. And this is not an excessive situation. I claim that this is how things function. We really want what we think we don't desire.

Pretty profound, right? Only that it is not really a speech by Žižek. The real speech is here, the content of which is almost the opposite of the above ‘speech’:

I would like to suggest a criterion for fake profundity: Any seemingly profound words have fake profundity if they still look profound after being ‘oppositized’.

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