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Archive for the ‘Work by Foucault’ Category

wrong-doingMichel Foucault, Wrong-Doing, Truth-Telling: The Function of Avowal in Justice,
Edited by Fabienne Brion and Bernard E. Harcourt
Translated by Stephen W. Sawyer

360 pages | 6 x 9 | © 2014

Further info

Three years before his death, Michel Foucault delivered a series of lectures at the Catholic University of Louvain that until recently remained almost unknown. These lectures—which focus on the role of avowal, or confession, in the determination of truth and justice—provide the missing link between Foucault’s early work on madness, delinquency, and sexuality and his later explorations of subjectivity in Greek and Roman antiquity.

Ranging broadly from Homer to the twentieth century, Foucault traces the early use of truth-telling in ancient Greece and follows it through to practices of self-examination in monastic times. By the nineteenth century, the avowal of wrongdoing was no longer sufficient to satisfy the call for justice; there remained the question of who the “criminal” was and what formative factors contributed to his wrong-doing. The call for psychiatric expertise marked the birth of the discipline of psychiatry in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries as well as its widespread recognition as the foundation of criminology and modern criminal justice.

Published here for the first time, the 1981 lectures have been superbly translated by Stephen W. Sawyer and expertly edited and extensively annotated by Fabienne Brion and Bernard E. Harcourt. They are accompanied by two contemporaneous interviews with Foucault in which he elaborates on a number of the key themes. An essential companion to Discipline and Punish, Wrong-Doing, Truth-Telling will take its place as one of the most significant works of Foucault to appear in decades, and will be necessary reading for all those interested in his thought.

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Originally posted on Progressive Geographies:

Foucault’s major works – his sole-authored books, plus some articles – will appear in a two-volume collection in 2015 as a prestigious Pléiade edition. Thanks to Colin Gordon for alerting me to the news. Frédéric Gros is interviewed about this here (in French). Among other things the interview says that the final Collège de France course, Théories et institutions pénales (1971-1972), is due out in 2015, and that, in common with other volumes, the Pléiade volumes will be a critical edition.

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subjectiviteMichel Foucault, Subjectivité et vérité. Cours au Collège de France (1980-1981), Gallimard Seuil, Collection Hautes Etudes

Date de parution 02/05/2014
352 pages – 26.00 € TTC

Publisher’s page

« L’hypothèse de travail est celle-ci : il est vrai que la sexualité comme expérience n’est évidemment pas indépendante des codes et du système des interdits, mais il faut rappeler aussitôt que ces codes sont étonnamment stables, continus, lents à se mouvoir. Il faut rappeler aussi que la façon dont ils sont observés ou transgressés semble elle aussi très stable et très répétitive. En revanche le point de mobilité historique, ce qui sans doute change le plus souvent, ce qui a été le plus fragile, ce sont les modalités de l’expérience. »

Michel Foucault

Foucault prononce en 1981 un cours qui marque une inflexion décisive dans son chemin de pensée et le projet ébauché dès 1976 d’une Histoire de la sexualité. C’est le moment où les arts de vivre deviennent le foyer de sens à partir duquel pourra se déployer une pensée neuve de la subjectivité. C’est le moment aussi où Foucault problématise une conception de l’éthique comprise comme l’élaboration patiente d’un rapport de soi à soi. L’étude de l’expérience sexuelle des Anciens permet ces nouveaux déploiements conceptuels. Dans ce cadre, Foucault analyse des écrits médicaux, des traités sur le mariage, la philosophie de l’amour ou la valeur pronostique des rêves érotiques, afin d’y retrouver le témoignage d’une structuration du sujet dans son rapport aux plaisirs (aphrodisia) antérieure à la construction moderne d’une science de la sexualité, antérieure à la hantise chrétienne de la chair. L’enjeu est en effet d’établir que l’imposition d’une herméneutique patiente et interminable du désir constitue l’invention du christianisme. Mais pour cela, il importait de ressaisir la spécificité irréductible des techniques de soi antiques.

Dans cette série de leçons, qui annoncent clairement L’Usage des plaisirs et Le Souci de soi, Foucault interroge particulièrement le primat grec de l’opposition actif / passif sur les distinctions de genre, ainsi que l’élaboration par le stoïcisme impérial d’un modèle de lien conjugal prônant une fidélité sans faille, un partage des sentiments, et conduisant à la disqualification de l’homosexualité.

With thanks to Stuart Elden at Progressive Geographies for this news

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Philosophers DVD
Author(s): Moderator and commentator Fons Elders
Noam Chomsky and Michel Foucault
Sir Alfred Ayer and Arne Naess
Leszek Kolakowski and Henri Lefèbvre
Sir Karl Popper and Sir John Eccles

A series by Fons Elders

This DVD is available at a more reasonable price from Fons Elders’ site than from Icarus films.

Review by Brian Boling

In 1971, a Dutch initiative called the International Philosophers Project brought together the leading thinkers of the day for a series of one-on-one debates. The participants included intellectual superstars Alfred Ayer and Arne Naess, Karl Popper and John Eccles, Leszek Kolakowski and Henri Lefèbvre, and – most notably, in a now justifiably famous exchange – Noam Chomsky and Michel Foucault.

This two-disc set collects all four remarkable conversations, along with introductions and commentary by Dutch philosopher and writer Fons Elders. Elders moderated the original debates – hand-picking each of the participants after spending some time getting to know them. Now, looking back four decades later, he offers perspective and context, summarizing the arguments and highlighting the key moments of each debate.


DISC ONE (80 and 74 minutes)

Noam Chomsky and Michel Foucault  

The Chomsky-Foucault debate has become a much-studied classic. This DVD captures all the energy and passion of the two philosophers, as they discuss whether or not some form of universal human nature – an inherent ability to understand language and scientific concepts, for instance – exists, or whether our responses are purely socially and culturally conditioned.

Alfred Ayer and Arne Naess  

A lively debate between British empiricist Alfred Ayer, who champions a limited skepticism, and Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess, the founder of the deep ecology movement, whose philosophy embraces interconnectedness.


DISC TWO (80 and 77 minutes)

Karl Popper and John Eccles  

Historian of science Karl Popper and his close friend, Nobel-prize-winning neuroscientist John Eccles, discuss Popper’s famous criterion of falsifiability: the idea that a statement is only scientific if it could possibility be proved false, which he had articulated against the traditional positivist view of the scientific method.

Leszek Kolakowski and Henri Lefèbvre  

Polish philosopher Leszek Kolakowski and French thinker Henri Lefèbvre (both former Communist Party members) debate the ongoing significance of Marxism and the concept of alienation – while at the same time struggling to define what a future, post-capitalist society might hold.


 
 

Each of these conversations captures the intellectual and social ferment of the late 1960s and early 1970s, when dramatic social and economic transformation seemed imminent – and philosophical questions underpinned discussions about what form the new society would take. Though many of the questions under discussion are timeless, this social and political context gives them a particular sense of urgency.

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clarisMichel Foucault – Freedom and Knowledge
Author(s): Edited by Fons Elders and Lionel Claris
Elders Special Productions BV, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. ISBN 978-90-805600-6-2 NUR 730

You can purchase this book as a paperback and also read the book in an ereader on Fons Elder’s site. An extract can also be found on Lionel Claris’ academia.edu site and you can find a version of Lynne Huffer’s introduction via a link in this earlier post on Foucault news

Contents

1, Preface by Fons Elders

2. Introduction by Lynne Huffer,
What Could Be Otherwise

Notes Introduction

3. Fons Elders’ response letter to Lynne Huffer

4. Michel Foucault,
Freedom and Knowledge
A first-time published interview by Fons Elders, translated by Lionel Claris

5. Michel Foucault: Retrospective Commentaries
by Fons Elders

Part I –The Interview,
The Question of Paradise

Part II –The Debate:
Human Nature: Justice versus Power
Noam Chomsky and Michel Foucault

Part III –Michel Foucault – My Personal View

Notes
Index of Names
Index of Subjects
Biography

Here is a link again to the newly rediscovered 1971 Foucault interview on Dutch television referred to in this book.

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Clare O'Farrell:

This is such a wonderful interview. Good to see it resurface.

Originally posted on Progressive Geographies:

I’d not seen this before – fifteen minutes of video in preparation for the Chomsky debate between Foucault and Fons Elders. Thanks to Sjoerd van Tuinen and Elena Loizidou for sharing this.

Update: Jeremy Crampton has more news on this here, including the link to the book of the interview transcript, which only seems to be available on Fons Elders’s own site.

Update 2: Aphelis has a lot more information on the debate itself here.

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barbinMichel Foucault, Herculine Barbin dite Alexina B.

Première parution en 1978

Postface d’Éric Fassin

Nouvelle édition suivie d’Un scandale au couvent d’Oscar Panizza en 2014

Parution : 13-03-2014
En 1868 à Paris, rue de l’École-de-Médecine, un homme se donne la mort en laissant à la postérité un manuscrit autobiographique. C’est l’«Histoire d’Alexina B.» que publiera en 1874 un grand notable de la médecine légale, Ambroise Tardieu. Pour celui-ci, il s’agit des «souvenirs et impressions d’un individu dont le sexe avait été méconnu», bref, d’un «pseudo-hermaphrodite». En 1860, à plus de vingt et un ans, Herculine Adélaïde Barbin, surnommée Alexina, devenait Abel en changeant de sexe à l’état civil. Sa plume passionnée raconte les tourments et les émois de la jeune fille, et s’achève sur l’amer désespoir de l’homme.

En 1978, Michel Foucault publie ce document remarquable, assorti d’un dossier historique, pour inaugurer une collection éphémère : «Les vies parallèles». À l’assignation médicale, depuis le XIXe siècle, d’un «vrai sexe», le philosophe de l’Histoire de la sexualité répond, dans la préface qu’il donne à la traduction américaine en 1980, en invoquant les «délices» d’une vie «sans sexe certain».

Pour la première fois sont inclus dans l’édition française d’Herculine Barbin dite Alexina B., épuisée depuis des années, ce texte important de Foucault ainsi que la nouvelle «Un scandale au couvent» du médecin allemand Oscar Panizza, qui en proposait une version romancée au tournant du XXe siècle. La postface d’Éric Fassin souligne enfin combien le développement des gender studies mais aussi celui du mouvement «intersexe» engagent aujourd’hui à relire ce récit remarquable où Herculine/Abel s’invente un «vrai genre».

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