Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Zizek and the Maori economy II

A typically jokey and random interview with Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek appears in The Guardian.

I've noted in an earlier post about insights on the Maori economy through his thinking on how capitalist hierarchies enforce lower social status while constantly articulating the inherent value and nobleness of our drudgery. So we have tribal leaders, iwi elites, senior managers, cultural brokers and so on pronouncing on rank and file 'tribal members', beneficiaries, and shareholders. Because we hurt, our path must be the right one...

I actually recognise a kindred soul in his subversive interpretation of humour and its role in revealing truth. "Most people think I'm making jokes, exaggerating – but no, I'm not. It's not that. First I tell jokes, then I'm serious. No, the art is to bring the serious message into the forum of jokes."

Gets you in trouble though ay.

Nice reposte to those who think intellectual elites have more insight than others: "When people ask me what to do with the economy, what the hell do I know? I think the task of people like me is not to provide answers but to ask the right questions."

I love laughing at Indigenous elites and their pretensions to intelligence, leadership, and even style (what is it with the orange-tanning application?! Or $70 underpants?!). But this can come back to bite you on the kumu, being such a small world n'all. And even though they are too often idiots, they too often have power, which is no less utilised despite being given them by The Man.

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Simon Lambert

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