Serving coffee with Žižek: On decaf, half-caf and real resistance at Starbucks


The following paper takes a Žižekian perspective, refined by Alessia Contu, as its theoretical point of departure, as it critically engages with the idea of ‘decaf’ resistance. This term signifies a resistance, which has been deprived of its potentially dangerous main-ingredient, but is still experienced as the original ‘dangerous’ resistance, where both the resister and the resisted have something at stake (Žižek, 2003, 2004, 2010b; Contu, 2008).

'Of luck and leverage'

Of all the uses to which the work of Slavoj Žižek has been put in recent years, Ole Bjerg’s new book on poker and its relationship to capitalism is, to my mind, one of the most interesting and productive. While Žižek is familiar fare in film and new media studies, literature and cultural studies, Bjerg brings Žižek’s (1991) re-reading of Lacan’s concepts of the real, the symbolic and the imaginary to the analysis of a simple game which, as players know, turns out to be exceedingly rich and complex.

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