By Slavoj Žižek
This present day, hundreds of thousands of individuals, desperate to flee struggle, violence and poverty, are crossing the Mediterranean to hunt shelter in Europe. Our reaction from our protected ecu standpoint, argues Slavoj Žižek, bargains versions of ideological blackmail: both we open our doorways as largely as possible; or we attempt to tug up the drawbridge. either solutions are undesirable, states Žižek. They simply prolong the problem, instead of tackling it.
The refugee concern additionally offers an opportunity, a different likelihood for Europe to redefine itself: yet, if we're to take action, we need to commence raising unpleasant and difficult questions. We also needs to acknowledge that giant migrations are our destiny: basically then do we commit to a carefully prepared process of switch, one founded no longer on a community that see the excluded as a danger, yet one who takes as its foundation the shared substance of our social being.
The merely means, in different phrases, to get to the center of 1 of the best concerns confronting Europe this present day is to insist at the international solidarity of the exploited and oppressed. probably such solidarity is a utopia. yet, warns Žižek, if we don’t interact in it, then we're fairly misplaced. And we'll should be misplaced.
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Extra info for Against the Double Blackmail: Refugees, Terror and Other Troubles with the Neighbours
And Back For the refugees are not just escaping from their war-torn homelands. They are also possessed by a certain dream. We see again and again on our screens refugees in south ern Italy who make it clear that they don’t want to stay there: they mostly want to live in Scandinavian countries. And what about the thousands in camps around the chan nel port o f Calais who are not satisfied with France but are ready to risk their lives to enter the United Kingdom? One can observe here the paradox o f utopia: precisely when people find themselves in poverty, distress and dan ger, and one would expect that they would be satisfied by a minimum of safety and well-being, the absolute utopia explodes.
The result o f such ‘structural adjustments’ was the integration o f local agriculture into the global economy: while crops were exported, farmers thrown off their land were pushed into slums, available as a workforce for outsourced sweat shops. As a result, these countries had to rely more and more on imported food. In this way, they are kept in post-colonial dependence, and are more and more vul nerable to market fluctuations: the skyrocketing o f grain prices (also caused by the use o f crops for biofuels) in recent years has caused starvation in countries from Haiti to Ethiopia.
This abuse is not something that happens because the institution has to accommodate itself to the pathological realities of 31 A G A I N S T THE DOUBLE B L A C K M A I L libidinal life in order to survive, but something that the institution itself needs in order to reproduce itself. One can well imagine a non-paedophiliac priest who, after years o f service, gets involved in paedophilia because the very logic o f the institution seduces him into it. Such an ‘institutional unconscious’ designates the obscene disa vowed underside that sustains the public institution.
Against the Double Blackmail: Refugees, Terror and Other Troubles with the Neighbours by Slavoj Žižek