The Demise of the Big Other

Essays on technology, psycho­analysis, philosophy, design, ideology & Slavoj Žižek


August 27, 2009

The Demise of the Big Other

Slavoj Žižek on the demise of the Big Other:

the typical postmodern subject is one who displays an outright cynicism towards official institutions, yet at the same time believes in the existence of conspiracies and an unseen Other pulling the strings. This apparently contradictory coupling of cynicism and belief is strictly correlative to the demise of the big Other. Its disappearance causes us to construct an Other of the Other in order to escape the unbearable freedom its loss encumbers us with. Conversely, there is no need to take the big Other seriously if we believe in an Other of the Other. We therefore display cynicism and belief in equal and sinceres measures.