Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The "Progressive" Nature - "Following the Drive"

The commonplace wisdom today is that "our extraordinary power to manipulate nature through scientific devices has run ahead of our faculty to lead a meaningful existence, to make human use of this immense power." Thus, the properly modern ethics of "following the drive" clashes with traditional ethics whereby one is instructed to live one's life according to standards of proper measure and to subordinate all its aspects to some all-encompassing notion of the Good. The problem is, of course, that no balance between these two notions of ethics can ever be achieved. The notion of reinscribing scientific drive into the constraints of the life-world is fantasy at its purest--perhaps the fundamental fascist fantasy. Any limitation of this kind is utterly foreign to the inherent logic of science--science belongs to the real and, as a mode of the real of jouissance, it is indifferent to the modalities of its symbolization, to the way it will affect social life.
- Slavoj Zizek, "Desire: Drive = Truth: Knowledge"

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