Foucault Must Not be Defended

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

Abstrakt

This paper responds to and comments on many of the themes of the book under consideration concerning Foucault and neoliberalism. In doing so, it offers reflections on the relation between the habitus of the intellectual and the political contexts of action and engagement in the case of Foucault, and the strengths and weaknesses of his characterization of his work in terms of an “experimental” ethos. It argues that it is possible to identify his distinctive views on neoliberalism as a programmatic ideal, as a language of critique of the postwar welfare state, and as an element within actual political forces such as the French “Second Left” of the 1970s. It examines the legacy of Foucault in “governmentality studies” and argues for attentiveness to the different intellectual positions, and their potentially divergent political consequences, within this school of thought. It concludes by suggesting that the discussion currently taking place, and in part inaugurated by this book, might signal a change of his status in the humanities and social sciences today from “unsurpassable horizon” of critical thought to acknowledged classical thinker, with strengths and limitations, and a series of problems that might not be our own.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftHistory and Theory
Vol/bind54
Udgave nummer3
Sider (fra-til)389-403
Antal sider15
ISSN0018-2656
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 2015

Emneord

  • Foucault
  • Neoliberalism
  • Marxism
  • Governmentality
  • Politics
  • Critique
  • Ethos
  • Habitus

Citationsformater