Conservatism, Liberalism, and Postmodern Identity

Michael Villanova


Throughout recent discussions of race, gender, and identity, both sides of the political spectrum avoid addressing the central concept of what the “Other” is. Using the psychoanalytic insights of Slavoj Zizek combined with the philosophical writings of Jean Baudrillard and Albert Camus, this paper will argue for the rejection of left liberalism, political correctness, and conservative cultural theory due to their inability to allow the subject more freedoms in relation to the Other. In postmodern times we find that the left has been duped into continuing the proliferation of conservative cultural ideology and that political correctness only works to continue capitalism as an acceptable economic structure. Finally, this paper looks at Zizek and Camus’ writings on possible solutions to this problem of identity being linked to capitalism.


Philosophy; Zizek; Hegel; Camus; Baudrillard; identity politics; postmodern; liberalism; conservatism; the Other; cultural libertarianism

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