In this book, Sean Homer addresses Slavoj A iA ek's work in a specific political conjuncture, his political interventions in the Balkans. The charge of inconsistency and contradiction is frequently levelled at A iA ek's politics, a charge he openly embraces in the name of "e;pragmatism."e; Homer argues that his interventions in the Balkans expose the dangers of this pragmatism for the renewal of the Leftist politics that he calls for. The book assesses A iA ek's political interventions in so far as they advance his self-proclaimed "e;ruthlessly radical"e; aims about changing the world. Homer argues the Balkans can be seen as A iA ek's symptom, that element which does not fit into the system, but speaks its truth and reveals what the system cannot acknowledge about itself.In Part II Homer explores A iA ek's radicalism through his critique of Alain Badiou, arguing that Badiou's "e;affirmationism"e; provides a firmer grounding for the renewal of the left than A iA ek's negative gesture analyzed in Part I. What distinguishes A iA ek from the majority of the contemporary Left today is his valorization of violence; Homer tackles this issue head-on in relation to political violence in Greece. Finally, Homer defends the utopian impulse on the radical left against its Lacanian critics.