This paper highlights the relevance of moral authority, and the role that egoistic ethical claims have in waging war. This is done, in view of the just war tradition, by drawing a parallel between the crusades in the 'kingdom of heaven' proclaimed in 1095, and the present Islamic jih d , as well as the Bush administration's declaration of a war on terror. It maintains that the role of self-legitimized leaders is crucial in shaping the order of the jus ad (...) bellum criteria, in both Christian and Muslim societies, and that the indiscriminate usage of just war rhetoric proves to be a formidable weapon. Moral authority is described as a power resource, capable of capsizing the relevance of ethics, subjecting the interpretation of justice to declare war to the self-proclaimed authorities, and moving masses on the grounds of enthusiasm. (shrink)
Global Health Needs and the Short-Term Medical Volunteer: Ethical Considerations Content Type Journal Article Pages 71-78 DOI 10.1007/s10730-011-9158-5 Authors Michele K. Langowski, Albert Gnaegi Center for Health Care Ethics, Salus Center, Saint Louis University, 3545 Lafayette, 5th Floor, St. Louis, MO 63104-1314, USA Ana S. Iltis, Department of Philosophy and Center for Bioethics, Health and Society, Wake Forest University, P.O. Box 7332, Winston-Salem, NC 27109, USA Journal HEC Forum Online ISSN 1572-8498 Print ISSN 0956-2737 Journal Volume Volume 23 Journal (...) Issue Volume 23, Number 2. (shrink)
: Michèle Le Dœuff speculates about why the parity movement enjoyed attention and sympathy in France over recent years. She discusses recent developments in "State-handled" feminism, and the resurgence of interest in feminist debate in France. Perhaps patriarchy is an institution more fundamental than the State?
This essay explores the practical significance of Michel Henry’s “material phenomenology.” Commencing with an exposition of his most basic philosophical intuition, i.e., his insight that transcendental affectivity is the primordial mode of revelation of our selfhood, the essay then brings to light how this intuition also establishes our relation to both the world and others. Animated by a radical form of the phenomenological reduction, Henry’s material phenomenology brackets the exterior world in a bid to reach the concrete interior transcendental experience (...) at the base of all exteriority. The essay argues that this “counter reduction,” designed as a practical orientation to the world, suspends all traditional parameters of onto(theo)logical individuation in order to rethink subjectivity in terms of its transcendental corporeality, i.e., in terms of the invisible display of “affective flesh.” The development of this “metaphysics of the individual” anchors his “practical philosophy” as he developed it—under shifting accents—throughout his oeuvre. In particular, the essay brings into focus Henry’s reflections on modernity, the industry of mass culture and their “barbaric” movements. The essay briefly puts these cultural and political areas of Henry’s of thinking into contact with his late “theological turn,” i.e., his Christological account of Life and the (inter)subjective self-realization to which it gives rise. (shrink)
: Michèle Le Dœuff discusses the revival of feminism in France, including the phenomenon of state-sponsored feminism, such as government support for "parity": equal numbers of women and men in government. Le Dœuff analyzes the strategically patchy application of this revival and remains wary about it. Turning to the work of seventeenth-century philosopher Gabrielle Suchon, Le Dœuff considers her concepts of freedom, servitude, and active citizenship, which may well, she argues, have influenced Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Le Dœuff favorably juxtaposes the active (...) citizenship defended by Suchon with the kind of citizenship implicitly supported by recent French government feminism. (shrink)
Michèle Le Dœuff discusses the revival of feminism in France, including the phenomenon of state-sponsored feminism, such as government support for "parity": equal numbers of women and men in government. Le Dœuff analyzes the strategically patchy application of this revival and remains wary about it. Turning to the work of seventeenth-century philosopher Gabrielle Suchon, Le Dœuff considers her concepts of freedom, servitude, and active citizenship, which may well, she argues, have influenced Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Le Dœuff favorably juxtaposes the active citizenship (...) defended by Suchon with the kind of citizenship implicitly supported by recent French government feminism. (shrink)
Cet article cherche à rendre compte de la signification du concept d'habitus que nous retrouvons chez Michel Henry en tentant de le situer par rapport aux principaux concepts qui sont au fondement de la phénoménologie matérielle.
Michèle Le Dœuff speculates about why the parity movement enjoyed attention and sympathy in France over recent years. She discusses recent developments in "State-handled" feminism, and the resurgence of interest in feminist debate in France. Perhaps patriarchy is an institution more fundamental than the State?
Cette étude, dans un premier temps, apporte des preuves à la possibilité d’interpréter la pensée politique de Hannah Arendt comme un projet phénoménologique original dont le but est d’élever l’apparence de la personne au rang de mode unique de l’apparaître. Puis elle présente brièvement la phénoménologie matérielle de Michel Henry dans laquelle le Soi individuel joue un rôle tout aussi central, puisqu’il est la condition de l’apparence de la vie et le fondement de tout apparaître. En conclusion, l’étude esquisse les (...) conséquences d’une telle position privilégiée du sujet individuel pour la conception théorique de la réalité effective de l’apparaître, de même que pour les problèmes pratiques de l’action de l’homme dans le monde. (shrink)
Questo articolo cerca di esplorare il rapporto tra parrēsia ed exemplum negli ultimi Corsi al Collège de France di Michel Foucault. A partire da L’ermeneutica del soggetto , viene analizzato il campo semantico e pratico relativo alla direzione di coscienza stoica ed epicurea, in cui Foucault oppone la parrēsia all’adulazione e alla retorica per collocarla invece all’interno di un’importante serie di concetti: la paradosis (la trasmissione dei discorsi di verità), il kairos (il momento giusto, la circostanza opportuna) e l’exemplum definito (...) come «il cuore della parrēsia » poiché esso assicura l’ adæquatio tra il soggetto di enunciazione e il soggetto di comportamento che si conforma alla verità espressa dal primo. Successivamente, viene posta l’attenzione sul legame tra parrēsia ed exemplum nell’ultimo Corso, Il coraggio della verità , per mettere in evidenza un’importante riconfigurazione all’interno della parrēsia cinica, in cui l’esempio appare come una categoria etica basata sulla permanenza e sull’identità a sé. Pertanto, esso si rivela inadeguato per questo regime aleturgico della parrēsia cinica, che invece consiste in un atteggiamento etico sperimentale, una mise à l’épreuve cui sottomettere la vita per arrivare a una trasformazione politica del mondo attraverso una continua e scandalosa provocazione degli altri, in grado di mettere in discussione la percezione di norme culturali e di abitudini consolidate. (shrink)
O texto pretende discutir a maneira como Foucault trabalha o problema da constituição do sujeito do cuidado de si – tema que tomou conta de seus últimos livros, cursos, entrevistas e conferências. A problematização deste sujeito e das “técnicas de si” que o constitui surgem na obra do autor a partir do momento em que Foucault reorienta as suas pesquisas sobre as relações de poder ao final dos anos 70, dando início às investigações sobre as formas de governar (governo dos (...) outros). Procura-se mostrar que o deslocamento operado pelo autor passa necessariamente por uma problematização das condições de possibilidade a partir das quais as relações de poder, em sua modalidade de “ações sobre ações”, tornam-se possíveis. A liberdade como condição de possibilidade das relações de poder surge na obra de Foucault ao mesmo tempo em que a investigação sobre as “técnicas de si” descortinam a formação de sujeitos éticos. (shrink)
The centerpiece of the first volume of Michel Foucault’s History of Sexuality is the analysis of what Foucault terms the “repressive hypothesis,” the nearly universal assumption on the part of twentieth-century Westerners that we are the heirs to a Victorian legacy of sexual repression. The supreme irony of this belief, according to Foucault, is that the whole time that we have been announcing and denouncing our repressed, Victorian sexuality, discourses about sexuality have actually proliferated. Paradoxically, as Victorian as we allegedly (...) are, we cannot stop talking about sex. Much of the analysis of the first volume of the History of Sexuality consists in an unmasking and debunking of the repressive hypothesis. This unmasking does not take the simple form of a counter-claim that we are not, in fact, repressed; rather, Foucault contends that understanding sexuality solely or even primarily in terms of repression is inaccurate and misleading. As he said in an interview published in 1983, “it is not a question of denying the existence of repression. It’s one of showing that repression is always a part of a much more complex political strategy regarding sexuality. Things are not merely repressed.”1 Foucault makes this extremely clear in the introduction to the History of Sexuality, Volume 1, when he writes. (shrink)
One of Michel Henry’s persistent claims has been that phenomenology is quite unlike positive sciences such as physics, chemistry, biology, history, and law. Rather than studying particular objects and phenomena phenomenology is a transcendental enterprise whose task is to disclose and analyse the structure of manifestation or appearance and its very condition of possibility.
For Hannah Arendt, spontaneous, initiatory human action and interaction are suppressed by the normalizing pressures of society once life - that is, sheer life - becomes the primary concern of politics, as it does, she finds, in the modern age. Arendts concept of the social is indebted to Martin Heideggers analysis of everyday Dasein in Being and Time , and contemporary political philosophers inspired by Heidegger, such as Jean-Luc Nancy, Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe, and Giorgio Agamben, tend to reproduce her account of (...) the withdrawal of the political in modernity. In this article, I complicate Arendts theory by turning to Michel Foucaults parallel but diverging understanding of the nature of power in modern society to show, surprisingly, that Foucaults narrative of the emergence of modern power pictures a society that is more, not less, politicized. Key Words: Hannah Arendt bio-power Michel Foucault Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe modernity Jean-Luc Nancy pastoral power the social rulership. (shrink)
To address the theological turn in phenomenology, this paper sets out critical arguments opposing the theist phenomenology of Michel Henry and Gilles Deleuze’s philosophy of the event. Henry’s phenomenology has been overlooked in recent commentaries compared with, for example, Jean-Luc Marion’s work. It will be shown here that Henry’s philosophy presents a detailed novel turn in phenomenology structured according to critical moves against positions developed from Husserl, Heidegger, and Merleau-Ponty. This demonstration is done through a strong contrast with Deleuze and (...) a short engagement with Quentin Meillassoux. The paper presents an argument against the theological turn on the grounds that it misunderstands the form of affectivity when compared to Deleuze’s work on affect and event. It will be argued that Henry’s search for a free-standing affect deduced as a condition for any appearance underplays the way any affect is included in many causal and transcendentally determined series such that any notion of the pure affect independent of other processes is a fiction. The loss of this pure affect entails the questioning of the theological turn in Henry. (shrink)
In Voir l'invisible Michel Henry applies his philosophy of autoaffection (which is both inspired by, and critical of, Husserl) to the realm of aesthetics. Henry claims that autoaffection, as non-objective experience, is essential not only to self-experience, but also to the experience of objects and their qualities. Intentionality tempts us to experience objects merely from the 'outside', but aesthetic experience returns us to the inner life of objects as a lived experience. On the basis of an examination of Henry's aesthetic (...) theory in the light of Husserl's analysis of our experience of visible objects, I conclude that revisions are required in both Husserl's and Henry's approaches: Husserl's noema must be considered to be a lived-through experience, and non-objective lived-through experience must be recognized as primordial evidence; Henry's claim that intentionality makes unreal all that it objectifies must be replaced by a recognition of the interdependence between autoaffection and heteroaffection. (shrink)
This is an important introduction to and critical interpretation of the work of the major French thinker, Michel Foucault. Through comprehensive and detailed analyses of such important texts as The History of Madness in the Age of Reason, The Birth of the Clinic, The Order of Things, and The Archaeology of Knowledge, the author provides a lucid exposition of Foucault's "archaeological" approach to the history of thought, a method for uncovering the "unconscious" structures that set boundaries on the thinking of (...) a given epoch. The book casts Foucault in a new light, relating his work to Gaston Bachelard's philosophy of science and Georges Canguilhem's history of science. This perspective yields a new and valuable understanding of Foucault as a historian and philosopher of science, balancing and complementing the more common view of him as primarily a social critic and theorist. (shrink)
It is impossible to imagine contemporary critical theory without the work of Michel Foucault. His radical reworkings of the concepts of power, knowledge, discourse and identity have influenced the widest possible range of theories and impacted upon disciplinary fields from literary studies to anthropology. Aimed at students approaching Foucault's texts for the first time, this volume offers: * an examination of Foucault's contexts * a guide to his key ideas * an overview of responses to his work * practical hints (...) on 'using Foucault' * an annotated guide to his most influential works * suggestions for further reading. Challenging not just what we think but how we think, Foucault's work remains the subject of heated debate. Sara Mills' Michel Foucault offers an introduction to both the ideas and the debate, fully equipping student readers for an encounter with this most influential of thinkers. (shrink)
Ian Hacking sets out a parallel between Michel Foucault’s thought and that of Giulio Preti based on the debate between them that took place in 1971. This is the speech given at the award of the ‘Giulio Preti’ Prize in November 2008.
Michel de Montaigne, the inventor of the essay, has always been acknowledged as a great literary figure but has never been thought of as a philosophical original. This book is the first to treat Montaigne as a serious thinker in his own right, taking as its point of departure Montaigne's description of himself as 'an unpremeditated and accidental philosopher'. Whereas previous commentators have treated Montaigne's Essays as embodying a skepticism harking back to classical sources, Ann Hartle offers a fresh account (...) that reveals Montaigne's thought to be dialectical, transforming skeptical doubt into wonder at the most familiar aspects of life. This major reassessment of a much admired but also much underestimated thinker will interest a wide range of historians of philosophy as well as scholars in comparative literature, French studies and the history of ideas. (shrink)
This article aims at showing that in spite of Michel Foucault’s violent rejection of phenomenology, this discipline never ceased to bear a crucial significance for his archaeological and genealogical analyses, in that it can be construed as a symptom indicating the most serious challenge that the contemporary philosophy has to meet: thinking together Experience and Knowledge. The author intends to prove, by resorting to the Marxian concept of ‘objectively necessary appearance’, that Foucault’s main opposition to phenomenology stems from his original (...) conception of the theory as a sort of experiment made by the philosopher on himself and on his own historical a priori. (shrink)
Autonomy is considered to be an important feature of professionals and to provide a necessary basis for their informed judgments. In this article these notions will be challenged. In this article I use Michel Foucault's deconstruction of the idea of the autonomous citizen, and his later attempts to reconstruct that idea, in order to bring some new perspectives to the discussion about the foundation of professionalism. The turning point in Foucault's discussion about autonomy is to be found in his proposal (...) for an ethics of the self. This ethics invites a break with the normalising discourses of modernity. As I see it, this makes it particularly relevant to a discussion about the principles of professionalism. The conception of parrhesia is central. I use the role of the teacher to illustrate my arguments. (shrink)
In this paper I focus on a central phenomenological concept in Michel Henry’s work that has often been neglected: generation. Generation becomes an especially important conceptual key to understanding not only the relationship between God and human self but also Henry’s adoption of radical interiority and his critical standpoint with respect to much of the phenomenological tradition in which he is working. Thus in pursuing the theme of generation, I shall introduce many phenomenological-theological terms in Henry’s trilogy on Christianity as (...) well as how he understands the relationship between phenomenology and theology. In the final sections of the paper, I turn to positively defining Henry’s notion of divine generation and examine the theological implications of it in light of his confrontation and rejection of the doctrine of creation in the book of Genesis found in his book, Incarnation: une philosophie de la chair. Humans are not created but are eternally generated, a bold claim that brings Henry to the brink of a kind of interiorized pantheism or Gnostic dualism. Finally, I offer some critical comments specifically about Henry’s doctrine of generation in light of the tension between auto-affection and hetero-affection and thus how one might think after Henry in light of the basic Augustinian theological distinction between self and God and the intentionality of faith opened up by that distinction. (shrink)
This is the first book in any language to deal comprehensively with the work of Michel de Certeau, the author of one of the most important, influential, and diverse bodies of scholarship and cultural theory to emerge from Europe during the exciting decades after the late Sixties. It is designed as a guide to draw out, not only the exceptional range, but the overall coherence of his approach. The author focuses on Certeau's major writings: on contemporary French historiography, the writings (...) of early modern mystics and travellers, on Michel Foucault and Pierre Bourdieu, Freud, the linguistics of 'utterance,' and a broad spectrum of work on contemporary cultural practices. In the process, the author seeks to draw out a set of themes that are distinctive to Certeau either in their form or their treatment: the history of early modern and modern 'economies' of writing, reading, and speech; the gap between representation and practice; the relation between 'strategic' social and intellectual programmes and 'tactical' political or poetic activity; the question of religious belief and desire; psycho-analysis and socio-analysis; and the development of what might be called an ethics/aesthetics. (shrink)
Michel Callon, Pierre Lascoumes and Yannick Barthe, Acting in an Uncertain World: An Essay on Technical Democracy Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 509-511 DOI 10.1007/s11024-011-9186-y Authors Thomas Berker, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies of Culture, Centre for Technology and Society, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, 7491 Trondheim, Norway Journal Minerva Online ISSN 1573-1871 Print ISSN 0026-4695 Journal Volume Volume 49 Journal Issue Volume 49, Number 4.
In this dissertation I claim that Michel Foucault is a pro-enlightenment philosopher. I argue that his critical history of thought cultivates a state of being autonomous in thought and action which is indicative of a kantian notion of maturity. In addition, I contend that, because he follows a nietzschean path to enlightenment, Foucault’s elaboration of freedom proceeds from his critique of who we are, which includes a rejection of humanism’s experiential limits. At the same time, and perhaps most importantly, I (...) also suggest that Foucault articulates a posthumanist conception of finitude and being. To begin with, I show that on humanism’s path to edghtenment, which is established by Rousseau, Kant and Hegel and currently advocated by Rawls and Taylor, a philosophy of the autonomous subject who desires self-actualisation through recogrution precedes the epistemologcal and political critiques which generate humanism’s objective, normative and subjective axes of experience. On the basis of Foucault’s archzological, genealogical and, when they operate together, critical historical critiques of these conditions of possibility for autonomy and recogrution, I maintain that humanism fails to teach us how to think or act freelythat is, as critical thought that delivers enhghtenment-and that humanism’s knowledge of the world and its justice in politics necessitate the confined exclusion of those who are different and the submission of subjectivity of those who are normal. In response to the immaturity that is at the heart of humanism, I illustrate that Foucault deploys archeology, genealogy and critical history to excavate his posthumanist, enlightenment alternatives of savoir, pouvoir and ethico-morality. After he relocates an explanation of cause and effect in the human sciences from savioir to the relations between savoir and pouvoir, I explicate how Foucault reconceives, firstly, the way pouvoir is exercised by productive mechanisms, which discipline the body and regulate the citizen, and, secondly, the nature of pouvoir, which he characterises as governmentality, or one’s action upon the actions of others. He then retlunks freedom as the vis-a-vis of pouvoir/savoir, and I demonstrate how critical history reveals that, prior to the hermeneutic relation to self wluch is at the centre of humanism’s conception of moral identity, ethical subjectivity in antiquity is formed through an ascetic, agonistic freedom that is based on a practical relation to self. Foucault uses this as a blueprint for the present, in which an ethico-political state of being autonomous in thought and action is constituted over against our limits of pouvoir/savoir. I thus claim that Foucault’s portrayal as an anti-enlightenment philosopher, who proffers nothing but anormative critique and amoral freedom, represents the perspective of those for whom to be anti-humanism is akin to being antienlightenment. These criticisms are exposed as misguided by the thesis that I verify in this dissertation, which is that critical history qua critique, thence an ontology, namely, Foucault’s critical ontology, brings about maturity and endorses an ehghtenment that is both contra- and post-humanism. (shrink)
This paper presents a direction for narrative ethics based on ethical ideas found in the works of Michel Foucault. Narrative ethics is understood here at the meta-level of cultural discourse to see how the moral subject is constituted by the discursive practices that structure the contemporary debate on reproductive technologies. At this level it becomes meta-narrative-ethics. After a theoretical discussion, this paper uses two literary narratives representing the polarized views in the debate to show how the moral subject may be (...) compelled to relate to its self. Ethics is redefined as Foucauldian rapport Ã soi, and ethical analysis, at this meta-level, shows how the moral self is intimately connected to cultural discourse. (shrink)
One of Michel Henry’s major contributions to the phenomenology of the body consists in his proposal, based on his reading of Maine de Biran, to understand the subjective corporeity from the angle of the ability of action. Subjective corporeity acquires its ontological autonomy and its reality only through its own temporality. In reference to several unpublished texts, this article tries to clarify the nexus between ability and time, and thus to emphasize the crucial importance of the past for a “phenomenology (...) of life”, in his paradoxical connection with the necessity to think a “coming in presence” of the world. (shrink)
Michel Morange: La vie, l’évolution et l’histoire Content Type Journal Article Category Book Notice Pages 1-2 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9595-4 Authors Mathias Grote, Institut für Philosophie, Literatur- Wissenschafts- und Technikgeschichte, Technische Universität Berlin, Straße des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany Pierre-Olivier Méthot, ESRC Centre for Genomics and Society (Egenis), University of Exeter, Byrne House, St German’s Road, Exeter, EX4 4PJ UK Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
Michels started from the radical wing of the German Marxist party, the SPD, and ended in Italy as one of Mussolini's professors of Fascist political science. What unifies his intellectual biography is a Weberian concern with bureaucracy.
Chez les commentateurs de l’oeuvre de Michel Foucault, le concept de sujet est communément analysé en termes de processus historiques de subjectivation. Contrairement à ce type d’analyse, l’enjeu de ce travail est de montrer l’émergence d’une problématique de la désubjectivation à partir de la notion foucaldienne de déprise de soi. Il s’agit de montrer d’abord que cette notion aménage à la fois la dispersion et l’effacement de l’auteur. Deuxièmement, la conceptualisation de la déprise sera traitée à travers l’analyse de pratiques (...) spécifiques d’écriture. Enfin, nous verrons comment la déprise de soi est investie dans le champ de l’identité subjective. (shrink)
Cet article souhaite élucider la philosophie de la chair développée par Michel Henry. Il s’agit de voir comment Henry parvient à penser la chair comme la possibilité principielle de l’individualité. Nous voulons montrer que la démarche henryenne repose non seulement sur une mise en question des canons de l’apparaître, mais également sur la conviction que le problème de l’individualité trouve sa solution dans une expérience charnelle radicale de soi-même permettant d’opérer un repli en-deçà du corps chosifié de la phénoménologie husserlienne. (...) C’est ce double mécanisme conceptuel qui permet à Henry de rejoindre l’individualité et de l’établir comme fondement de la vie in-ek-statique. (shrink)
In their respective commentaries to my article “Postphenomenology and the Politics of Sustainable Technology” both Robert Scharff and Michel Puech take issue with my postphenomenological inroad into the politics of technology. In a first step I try to accommodate the suggestions and objections raised by Scharff by making my account of the political more explicit. Consequently, I argue how an antagonistic relational conceptualisation of the political allows me to address head on Puech’s plea to leave politics behind and move towards (...) an ethically informed, post-political approach to sustainability. “But perhaps the question philosophy is confronted with—through the question of the political—might be whether not all reasoning, including a purely theoretical reasoning, can truly only be a political reasoning, resulting in an inevitable, indeed necessary circular structure” (Boehm 2002; author’s translation). In a footnote to my original article ‘Postphenomenology and the Politics of Sustainable Technology’, I wrote that “for the purpose of this paper, it suffices to say that I use the adjective ‘political’ to indicate all aspects of human and non-human agency that are related to ‘shaping the good life’ (Goeminne 2011a).” With hindsight, brought about by the commentaries of Scharff (2011) and Puech (2011), I now see that I could not have been more optimistic. Or should I say naïve? Indeed, although coming from different angles and resulting in very different suggestions, both commentaries precisely target my postphenomenological inroad into the ‘politics’ of technology. In challenging my grounding of the politics of technology in a postphenomenological perspective, Scharff in particular invites me to make my notion of the political more explicit. In what follows, I will therefore first elaborate my take on the political dimension of technology in dialogue with Scharff’s comments and suggestions. Armed with this deepened concept of the political, I will then address Puech’s plea to leave politics behind and move towards an ethically informed, post-political approach to sustainability. Evidently, within the limits of this piece, I can only indicate the broader direction my conceptualisation of the political takes. It suffices perhaps to say that, partly induced by the commentaries of Scharff and Puech, the question of the political has meanwhile taken a much more prominent place in my research as can be seen from a few recent publications [e.g. Goeminne (2012) and Goeminne (forthcoming)]. In saying this, I am also expressing my indebtedness to the commentators for nudging me in this political direction. (shrink)
Does Michel Henry’s Phenomenology of life include an ethical and political dimension? It appears that the writings about Marx already include such aspects, especially in reference to the problem of social determinism. More generally, however, our attention must be focused on what Henry calls the transcendental genesis of politics which accounts for the lack of autonomy of the political field, just like in the case of economics. Politics may then be analyzed against that background, for instance in the writings on (...) totalitarianism and democracy. The frame given by transcendental genesis is also tied to the fundamental opposition between barbarism and culture which pervades the axiological implications of Henry’s work. Because culture is always referring to a “culture of life,” it allows connecting life and its immanent reality with ethical/political questions. (shrink)
In this paper, I will reflect on the place of language within Michel Henry’s phenomenology. I will claim that Michel Henry’s position provokes an architectonic problem in his conception of phenomenology and I will discuss how he tried to solve it. At the end of the essay, I will try to clarify what I believe to be the ultimate root of that problem involving language.
"Clare O'Farrell is to be congratulated on producing a truly magnificent book on the work of Michel Foucault. There are details, insights and observations that will engage the specialist and there is an extensive documentation of Foucault's output. If there is a more comprehensive book on Foucault's work I have yet to see it. I anticipate those teaching and taking courses on Foucault's work will find Clare O'Farrell's book to be an invaluable resource'" - Barry Smart, University of Portsmouth "Dr. (...) Clare O'Farrell has written a marvelous introduction to this Foucault for that ever growing number of readers who are working in what has come to be designated as cultural studies. This volume captures the penetrating interdisciplinary concerns that have made Foucault a guide to so many beyond the frontiers of philosophy and history, beyond the borders of the academic community itself. O'Farrell is an excellent guide to Foucault's exploration of culture, highlighting, as she does, the characteristic insights of his learning: the instability of cultural forms of order, the subversive potential of historical analyses, the variety of true discourses within history, and his commitment to social justice. O'Farrell reveals Foucault as he is: the engaged moralist who survived the twentieth century's systems of total explanation. This is an excellent introduction for the general reader to a passionate mind that continues to spread its influence'" - James Bernauer, Boston College Michel Foucault's work is one of the most influential sources of ideas in the humanities and social sciences today. Clare O'Farrell offers a comprehensive and accessible introduction to Foucault's enormous, diverse and challenging output. Her book provides a range of practical tools and a reference work for readers who wish to understand and apply his ideas at both introductory and advanced levels. This volume includes: - a discussion of Foucault's situation in the contemporary context exploring his role as an iconic thinker, with clear explanations as to why his work is so difficult to come to grips with, and also importantly, why it is of interest to so many people. - the location of Foucault's work within its own historical, social and political setting. - brief summaries in chronological order of all of Foucault's major works, including the more recently published volumes of lectures. - the organization of Foucault's work around five distinct but interrelated series of assumptions which underpin his world view: namely order, history, truth, power and ethics. Ideas for which he is well-known, such as archaeology, genealogy, discourse, discipline, governmentality, the subject and others are defined and discussed within the framework of these five assumptions. - a chronology of Foucault's life, work and times. - a very extensive list of key concepts in Foucault's work with detailed references pointing to where the relevant material can be found in his writings. - a wide-ranging list of resources and a bibliography of Foucault's work for easy consultation. (shrink)
This essay tries to show how Michel Henry’s Phenomenology of Life can be understood as a valuable criticism of hermeneutical philosophy and especially of hermeneutical phenomenology in the manner Martin Heidegger and Paul Ricoeur had conceptualized it. Using Michel Henry’s concept of phenomenological distance, it will be shown here that on the basis of every hermeneutics there lies the classical topos of the auctorial intention that was once gained by the interpretation of texts and is simply ontologized by hermeneutical philosophers. (...) What follows from such a perspective is that human life seems to be ontologically separated form itself, against which Michel Henry tries to show that each life can only be humane, both in relation to itself as well as to others, if it affects itself without any distance. (shrink)
This article proposes a reading of Michel de Certeau's The Writing of History which derives an understanding of the concept of practice as authoritative to the establishment and development of Enlightenment rationality. It is seen as a new form of legitimation established in the redeployment of religious ‘formalities’ in early modernity, supportive of the ostensible deliverance of the projects of reason. Subversive of its moral and ideological operations and geneses, this is an understanding of practice whose subject is the state. (...) Practice, as de Certeau advances it, led to the development of a concept of education productive of a regulatory ambit of social utility, and the student as both a figure of the utile and its moral postulate. This article thematizes the authoritative formality of the concept of practice in its hegemonic origins from early modernity to the thought of Karl Marx. It provides a needed supplement to Marx's still provocative contribution to a persistent counter-narrative (of practice as stark corrective to the ineffectual interpretive vagaries of ‘theory’), one which elides, and thus reinforces, significant prior, and no less persistent, functions of the concept of practice as here elaborated from de Certeau's The Writing of History. (shrink)
Richard Rorty claims that philosophy can either be seen as a practice whose primary goal is to show the interrelationship between the different practices in our society or as a discipline whose main aim is to discover the essence of the objects we posit as well as the normative concepts we employ in different discourses. Michel Foucault’s works have usually been associated with the initial characterization of philosophy mentioned above. However, in what follows, I demonstrate how Foucault’s general theme, what (...) he dubs “the discourse of true and false,” intersects with the view that philosophy is the search for the nature of the normative notions we employ in different discourses. In a similar manner, I demonstrate how Foucault’s conception of truth conforms to minimalism’s schema for truth. Though his theme’s intersection with the characterization of philosophy as the search for universal categories and essences is in line with his criticism of how discourses dictate the ways of constituting, seeing and compartmentalizing an object, the manner in which his conception of truth conforms to minimalism’s schema for truth leads to a paradoxical situation for his conception of truth may also be seen as a byproduct of a discourse about truth itself. Keywords - Rorty, Foucault, truth, minimalism, deflationism, discourse of true and false. (shrink)
ABSTRACT: Jean-Michel Salanskis surveys a number of well-known principles of leftist thought in order to criticize certain illusions to which it falls prey, but also in order to renew its most essential motivation: the search for equality. However, in so doing, Salanskis deploys an ambiguous and problematic notion of possibility that threatens the coherence of his project. The present study analyzes aspects of Salanskis’ book, taking possibility as a guiding thread, and proposes adjustments that may help to avoid certain classic (...) pitfalls in the history of dialectical thinking. (shrink)
FOUCAULT: A CRITICAL READER Edited by David Couzens Hoy New York: Basil Blackwell, 1986. 246pp., $45.00 ($14.95 paper) MICHEL FOUCAULT by Mark Cousins and Althar Hussain New York: St. Martin's Press, 1984. 278pp., $27.95 ($11.95 paper).
This paper guides the Romanian reader through a variety of discussions surrounding the central themes of Michel Henry’s latest books (C’est moi la Vérité,1996; Incarnation, 2000). Basically, it aims to present the principles of the phenomenology of Life in Henry’s thought, focusing on the status of the apparition, and of truth, both of which are to be understood not as the ontic relation of adaequatio, but as the self-revelation of Life in the immanence of each non-intentional experience. My review-article draws (...) upon the problem of the ‘original impression’, a crucial stage in shifting the theme of the ‘transcendental body’ and of the ‘self-affection’. At this point, my interpretation suggests that Henry’s phenomenology of affection would require further stark distinctions like the one between the ‘corporeal pain’ and the ‘transcendental sufferance’, very significant from the Christian viewpoint, too. I also try to suggest the importance of Henry’s phenomenology of Life for a radical understanding of bioethics. In addition, I tackle Michel Henry’s strong critique of the autistic sexual love, which sounds strikingly similarly to those raised up, respectively, by S. Kierkegaard and J.-L. Marion. Eventually, my essential claim is that one should reconsider very seriously the importance of the Christian mystical theology (best represented by the Patristic tradition) in order to get an adequate understanding of Michel Henry’s radical phenomenology of Life. (shrink)
Michel Henry has renewed our understanding of life as immanent affectivity: life cannot be reduced to what can be made visible; it is – as immanent and as affectivity – radically invisible. However, if life (la vie) is radically immanent, the living (le vivant ) has nonetheless to relate to the world: it has to exist . But, since existence requires and includes intentional components, human reality – being both living and existing – implies that immanence and intentionality be related (...) to one another, even though they are conceived at the same time as radically distinct modes of appearing in Henry’s phenomenology of life. Following this line of thought, we are faced with at least two questions: First, what reality does immanent appearing have for us as existing and intentional beings? And second, from an ethical point of view, what does Henry’s opposition of “barbarism” and “second birth” mean in terms of existence? As will be shown, it follows from the standpoint of radical phenomenology itself that immanent affectivity has reality for us only insofar as it finds its expression or translation in the realm of the intentionally visible and that, with regard to ethics, both “barbarism” and its overcoming in “second birth” are effective only insofar as they are mediated through representations. Henry’s critique of representation and intentionality needs therefore to be revised, especially in the field of practical philosophy, where the essential role played by intentionality has to be acknowledged even by radical phenomenology. (shrink)
French philosopher and historian Michel Foucault is essential reading for students in departments of literature, history, sociology and cultural studies. His work on the institutions of mental health and medicine, the history of systems of knowledge, literature and literary theory, criminality and the prison system, and sexuality, has had a profound and enduring impact across the humanities and social sciences. This introductory book, written for students, offers in-depth critical and contextual perspectives on all of Foucault's major published works. It provides (...) ways in to understanding Foucault's key concepts of subjectivity, discourse, and power and explains the problems of translation encountered in reading Foucault in English. The book also explores the critical reception of Foucault's works and acquaints the reader with the afterlives of some of his theories, particularly his influence on feminist and queer studies. This book offers the ideal introduction to a famously complex, controversial and important thinker. (shrink)
Quoique l'auteur de quatre romans, dont l'un a été couronné par l'un des prix littéraires les plus prestigieux, Michel Henry n'a jamais véritablement formulé une esthétique du roman. L'objet de cet article est, après une étude détaillée de son concept de vie, de tenter de saisir quelle place la pratique littéraire pouvait avoir au sein de son système. Autrement dit, elle s'interroge sur la possibilité de fonder sa création littéraire sur sa réflexion philosophique.
L'œuvre de Michel Foucault, à l'écart des modes intellectuelles de son temps, et à la croisée de la philosophie et de l'histoire, ne propose ni vision globale du monde ni théorie générale de la société.
This paper takes its departure from Michel Henry’s criticism of a technological view that “extends its reign to the whole planet, sowing desolation and ruin everywhere” ( I am the Truth , 271). It argues that although Henry’s critique of technology is helpful and important, it does not go far enough, inasmuch as it excludes all non-human beings from the Truth of “Life” he advocates against the destructive truths of technology and therefore cannot fully articulate the way in which technology (...) does in fact cause “desolation and ruin” on the entire planet. At the same time I suggest that this strict division between human and non-human life is not essential to Henry’s project, which may well have resources for a more environmentally friendly proposal. The first part of the paper lays out Henry’s critique of technology in some detail, highlighting the ways in which it contains important insights for our contemporary situation. The second part of the paper explores the stark division Henry draws between human generation from the divine life and the creation of everything else, including his rejection of any identification of humans with “protozoa and honey bees,” which would seem to suggest a complete lack of concern for non-human life. The final part of the paper seeks to find a way beyond this dichotomy by showing how non-human life may be included in Henry’s proposal in a way that extends his critique of technology in environmentally conscious ways without losing his phenomenological insights about the human condition. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is focused on presenting the method of historical analysis built by Michel Foucault in his book Histoire de la Folie à l’Âge Classique as a “History of the Other”. Such term appears for the first time at Les Mots et les Choses’s Preface, in which Foucault analyses his method in the quoted book on madness (but also in La Naissance de la Clinique). In this sense, firstly we have to verify the hypothesis of this relation (...) between Foucault’s archeological method as a Thought of the Otherness, precisely concerning to that “Other History” proposed by the philosopher. Secondly, we need to analyse specifically Histoire de la Folie as a privileged work, as far as the approach on the relation with the other is concerned. KEY WORDS – Archeology of knowledge. History. Alterity. Madness. (shrink)
In a variety of Michel Foucault's writings, one can recognize the fundamental influence that the work of Friedrich Nietzsche had on the method of the French philosopher and historian, even though Nietzsche is only rarely mentioned in direct references. The most obvious influence can be seen in Foucault's adaption of the genealogical method, which he theoretically explores in his essay "Nietzsche, Genealogy, History." Scholarship acknowledges this adaptation but otherwise restricts the application of Nietzschean concepts to Foucault's writings to central notions (...) of Nietzsche's late work. Keith Ansell-Pearson, for instance, writes that "Nietzsche influenced Foucault in a number of ways, but they can basically be .. (shrink)
Le colloque international de Montpellier - " Michel Henry. Phénoménologie de la vie et culture contemporaine " - a tenu à rendre hommage à cette œuvre novatrice qui a ouvert de nombreux horizons de recherche.
Esta ponencia pretende hacer explícita la particular relación que Michel Foucault y Giorgio Agamben postulan entre la vida y el poder como una relación de imbricación por la cual el poder siempre ha dado forma a la vida, en el sentido de lo viviente, apresándola bajo modalizaciones específicas y, por esta vía, propone asimismo una hermenéutica de las formas contemporáneas del sujeto a partir de la relación señalada. A tal fin, se revisará la forma particular en que la vida en (...) tanto zōē o simple vida biológica o animal, se ha imbricado con el poder en Occidente y en particular en la modernidad, para producir determinadas formas humanas en las que la vida en términos de bios o vida calificada por la cultura y la polis, ha quedado, en forma contraria a las declaraciones de principios explícitos de la arquitectura metafísicopolítica, neutralizada. Para ello, se examinarán en especial, los desarrollos de Michel Foucault y de Giorgio Agamben en torno del biopoder y la biopolítica, la nuda vida y las figuras del homo sacer y el estado de excepción y el paradigma de la teología económica. (shrink)
Without doubt Michel Foucault was one of the 20th century's towering intellectuals. His work on organization of knowledge, sexuality, power, discipline, medicine, madness, identity, and politics has left an idelible mark on contemporary thinking in these fields. Edited by one of the world's most distinguished Foucault scholars, Barry Smart, this collection sets Foucault's work in the the appropriate historical and intellectual context by orgaizing the material thematically with introductions that quide the reader through the complexities of the essays. These volumes (...) will be essential reading wherever the work of Foucault is debated and applied. (shrink)