Calling All Communists! Review of The Idea of Communism, edited by Costas Douzinas and Slavoj Zizek
By: Richard E. Rubenstein July 1, 2011
It seems that we missed a hell of a conference.
In March 2009, in response to an invitation issued by Costas Douzinas, director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities at the University of London, and Slavoj Zizek, among other things, the Institute’s International Director, twelve hundred people turned up to hear a small galaxy of leftist philosophers address the question “whether ‘communism’ is still the name to be used to designate radical emancipatory projects” (viii). Depending upon how history goes, the conference, whose papers are reproduced in this volume, may turn out to have been a historic event. At least the organizers, who expected only a small audience to attend, dare to think so. We can reach our own conclusions about this after reviewing what the major contributors said and how they said it.