cover of book

Idiocracy: Thinking and Acting in the Age of the Idiot
by Zoran Terzic
translated by Michael Turnbull
Diaphanes, 2021
eISBN: 978-3-0358-0374-7 | Paper: 978-3-0358-0367-9

Beyond the universal story of human incapability, there is a new quality of idiocy today. While the old idiot derived knowledge from isolation, the new idiot refuses all understanding of the world. This new idiot appears merely as the figure of the systematic incompetence that is impacting every crevice of political and media life, giving rise to new, often utterly absurd competences.

Current debates about “fake news” or the “postfactual society” can be read from this perspective as evidence of a broad transformation of the forms of self-politics, in which the absurd is redefining the image of reality. For, although there is much talk about global consciousness and community, the solipsism of this new idiot seems to be operating all the more effectively in the background. As the isolated self of the many, it forms the empty center of a planetary idiocy revolving around itself.

Zoran Terzić’s wide-ranging and sharply detailed book takes up the figure of the idiot and follows its numerous appearances throughout intellectual history in an examination of the art of idiocy that extends outside the hypertrophic present. Starkly relevant, Idiocracy provides much-needed context to how we think and how we don’t.

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