One of our most daring intellectuals offers a Lacanian interpretation of religion, finding that early Christianity was the first revolutionary collective.
Marxism and Christianity, although opposed in so many ways, share an absolutism that appears quaint in these postmodern times. iek (philosophy, Univ. of Ljubljana, Croatia) is thus doubly countercultural, since the Hegelian thesis of this work is that "to become a true dialectical materialist, one should go through the Christian experience." In the first two chapters, the most accessible of the book, iek argues with sarcastic verve against some verities of contemporary liberalism. In the middle chapter, a discussion of ontology, the book rises to its acme of theorizing, a difficult climb for readers not acclimatized to the rarified atmosphere of Lacanian and Hegelian thought. In the remaining chapters, iek penetrates to the Marxist core of Christianity by radically reinterpreting traditional doctrines. His arguments are sometimes far-fetched and his interpretations of Scripture highly eisegetical (i.e., reading ideas into a text, instead of drawing meaning out). But iek rarely fails to entertain with his Nietszchean contrariness and his dazzling facility for illustrating philosophical points with apt pop culture references. Of interest to academic libraries with strong holdings in continental philosophy, religious studies, or liberal theology.-Charles Seymour, Wayland Baptist Univ. Lib., Plainview, TX Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.