‘Interview with Mladen Dolar: Dialectic at a Standstill? Hegel at the Times of COVID’ by Agon Hamza and Frank Ruda


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“Defending philosophy, for its own sake, as a space of thought beyond any immediate utility and practical use, feels a bit, in these times, like a belief in magic. The magic that pure thought can have consequences, that persevering with it, as such and for its own sake, will make a difference – if thought is on the level of its task. There is, yet again, the peril of a delusion of grandeur that philosophy has been prone to throughout its history. We have such great ideas, if only people would heed them. But this idea, the idea of the idea, as it were, goes back to the origins of philosophy, to its basic stance stated first by Parmenides, of co-belonging of thought and being…”


Mladen Dolar is Professor and Senior Researcher at the Department of Philosophy, University of Ljubljana since 1982 and has served as the Advising Researcher in Theory at the Jan Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, Netherlands. He is also Professor of Philosophy at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. His principal areas of research are Psychoanalysis, Modern French Philosophy (Lacan, Foucault, Derrida, Badiou, et. al.), German Idealism, and Art Theory, especially Musicology. With Žižek and others, Dolar was the co-founder of the Ljubljana Society of Theoretical Psychoanalysis, whose main aim is to read late 18th cent. and early 19th cent. German Classical Philosophy through the frame of Lacanian psychoanalytic theory. His main field of expertise is the philosophy of Georg W. F. Hegel, on whom he has written several papers, including a two-volume interpretation of Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit first published in Slovene between 1990 and 1991. Dolar has lectured extensively across many different Universities in Europe and the United States and is author of hundreds of papers in different scholarly journals and in various collected volumes. Apart from over twelve monograph publications in Slovene, his books published in English most notably include A Voice and Nothing More and Opera’s Second Death, both of which were translated into several languages. His new book The Riskiest Moment is forthcoming with Duke University Press.

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