David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophy and Social Criticism 34 (4):357-382 (2008)
In several lectures, interviews and essays from the early 1980s, Michel Foucault startlingly argues that he is engaged in a kind of critical work that is similar to that of Immanuel Kant. Given Foucault's criticisms of Kantian and Enlightenment emphases on universal truths and values, his declaration that his work is Kantian seems paradoxical. I agree with some commentators who argue that this is a way for Foucault to publicly acknowledge to his critics that he is not, as some of them charge, attempting a total critique of Enlightenment beliefs and values, but is instead attempting to transform them from within. I argue further that Foucault's self-professed Kantianism can also productively be read as a means of encouraging change in his intellectual audience, a call to courage to take up the thread of Enlightenment thought that Foucault finds in Kant's essay, `What is Enlightenment?': that of directing one's philosophical efforts towards questioning and transforming one's own present in its historical specificity, for the sake of promoting the values of freedom and autonomy therein. Though much of Kant's philosophical work is focused on that which lies outside of history, Foucault locates in some of it a concern for what is happening here and now that, I argue, he encourages his audience to take up for themselves through tracing his own intellectual lineage to Kant. In so doing, he encourages contemporary philosophers to consider the value and effects of their work on the present social and political contexts in which they live.
|Keywords||Enlightenment Michel Foucault Intellectuals Immanuel Kant|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Ferda Keskin (2007). Foucault's Kantian Legacy. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 11:97-107.
Catherine Mills (2010). A Manner of Speaking: Declaration, Critique and the Trope of Interrogation. Law and Critique 21 (3):247--260.
Joel Whitebook (1999). Freud, Foucault and 'the Dialogue with Unreason'. Philosophy and Social Criticism 25 (6):29-66.
Corey McCall (2010). The Art of Life: Foucault's Reading of Baudelaire's "the Painter of Modern Life". Journal of Speculative Philosophy 24 (2):138-157.
Corey McCall (2007). Foucault's Alleged Irrationalism: The Legacy of German Romanticism in the Thought of Michel Foucault. Idealistic Studies 37 (1):1-13.
Dianna Taylor (2003). Practicing Politics with Foucault and Kant: Toward a Critical Life. Philosophy and Social Criticism 29 (3):259-280.
Amy Allen (2003). Foucault and Enlightenment: A Critical Reappraisal. Constellations 10 (2):180-198.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads73 ( #19,089 of 1,101,781 )
Recent downloads (6 months)13 ( #13,765 of 1,101,781 )
How can I increase my downloads?