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Rock and Philosophy at the CNT in Zagreb

The exceptionally popular cycle of the Philosophical Theatre of the CNT in Zagreb continued on January 29, 2017 with the appearance of the leading Italian philosopher Franco B. Bifo and Bobby Gillespie, the signer of the cult Scottish rock group Primal Scream.

The editor and host of the Philosophical Theatre Srećko Horvat explained how this unexpected combination of guest was selected: Bifo has been for some time one of the most interesting contemporary philosophers who offers lucid analyses of late capitalism, from the wave of terrorism to the appearance of new fascism. The group Primal Scream has been moving the boundaries of rock for the past thirty years. When such a band decides to make a new album inspired by Bifo it is logical to invite them together to the Philosophical Theatre.

What is interesting and this will certainly attract a different type of spectators to the CNT in Zagreb is that both Bifo and Gillespie were shaped by the appearance of punk which served as the year zero for their political subjectification and further development, both of philosophy and rock. Exactly thirty years have elapsed since the first album of the Primal Scream and before that Bobby used to play in the cult Jesus and the Mary Chain.  During the 1970s, Bifo founded the cult pirate radio station Radio Alice after which he worked with Felix Guattari on his schizoanalysis. He dedicated himself to the research of late capitalism.

Gillespie, a child from a Scottish working family commented his upcoming arrival in Zagreb: I would like to discuss how it is possible that the radical thinkers such as Horvat and Varoufakis, Bifo and Žižek do not approach the children of the working class. When I and my friends attend such events, we always notice the absence of the working class, exactly those who are in need of such context, inspirations and ideas.

Srećko Horvat said: “I cannot but agree with Bobby, which is actually the reasons why we have invited him to the CNT in Zagreb. We are convinced that Primal Scream would sell out Jarun, but this is a unique opportunity to hear the Primal Scream in a philosophical and political performance, without the guitars and drums.

In order to offer a programme for the most diverse of tastes and the inquisitive spectators, the Philosophical Theatre already in its following editions is announcing very distinct guests such as philosopher Mladen Dolar, Laibach, the controversial nun Teresa Forcades, etc