Southern Journal of Philosophy 55 (S1):153-172 (2017)

Authors
Abstract
Foucault only refers to Shakespeare in a few places in his work. He is intrigued by the figures of madness that appear in King Lear, Hamlet, and Macbeth. He occasionally notes the overthrow of one monarch by another, such as in Richard II or Richard III, arguing that “a part of Shakespeare's historical drama really is the drama of the coup d’État.” For Foucault, the first are illustrations of the conflict between the individual and the mechanisms of discipline. The second are, however, less interesting than moments when the sovereign is replaced, not with another sovereign, but with a different, more anonymous, form of power. Yet, in his 1976 Collège de France course, Society Must Be Defended, where he treats the theme at most length, he intriguingly suggests that Shakespearean historical tragedy is “at least in terms of one of its axes, a sort of ceremony, or a rememorialization of the problems of public right.” Foucault was long fascinated by the theatre, and especially its relation to political ceremony. Drawing especially on his 1972 lectures in Paris and a related presentation in Minnesota, this paper asks how we might understand the relation between ceremony, theatre, and politics in Foucault and Shakespeare. Many of Shakespeare's plays, both histories and tragedies, thus demonstrate the importance of ritual and ceremony, a political theatre. Examining the disrupted ceremony of King Lear, the repeated ceremony of King John, the denial of ritual in Coriolanus, and the parody of the ceremonial in Henry IV, Part One opens up a range of historical, theoretical, and political questions.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1111/sjp.12225
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 54,646
External links

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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The White Coat Ceremony: A Contemporary Medical Ritual.S. J. Huber - 2003 - Journal of Medical Ethics 29 (6):364-366.
“Society Must Be Defended” and the Last Foucault.Julian Bourg - 2004 - Radical Philosophy Review 7 (1):1-16.
Hegel and Shakespeare on Moral Imagination.Jennifer Ann Bates - 2010 - State University of New York Press.
Foucault and Left Conservatism.Jeremy Moss - 2004 - Foucault Studies 1:32-52.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2017-09-15

Total views
5 ( #1,120,432 of 2,385,975 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #555,436 of 2,385,975 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes