Thread: Word of Today
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Old 10.03.2014, 12:15
Faltrad Faltrad is offline
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Re: Word of Today

Foucault is not always very clear even in French. I like this article :
http://ressources-cla.univ-fcomte.fr...e8/vihalem.pdf

Subjectivation became subjectification in English. It is a general processus of relationship between what is individual towards what is collective. Foucault analyze it in specific domains in his time because to him, the time is central to understand what subjects are and become, as if everything that is was in constant state of becoming (état de devenir). It sounds contradictory but it just means that everything is in changing, even what traditional philosophy called being.
Oversimplified but perhaps useful pedagogically, Foucault puts every subjrct into context. Context is time in history incl. historical processes that lead to it on one side and place in culture which can be simplified as the social stucture in which subjects are. In other words, Foucault consider for any given concrete topic that one must go self critical about what one think one knows and why one does, by examining the howabouts of how this knowledge could occur. For that, one need to examine the context. Careful, context is not a Foulcaldian concept, it's just a simplification as an introduction.
Eventually, you'll be confronted with Foucault's big issue: power. To him, the relationship between knowledge and power is sociological and ethical, which leads him to take it politically too. Don't forget his militantism in the 60ies. Inspired by psychoanalytical concepts, he extrapolates the concept of subject to a philosophical and sociological terrain. To him, philosophy is not a system, it's a tool to understand the true issues between collectivity and individuallity in a real society. The system is the society. In a sense he is not a normative philosopher telling how the wolrd should be but an analytical philosopher telling us why we have such a hard time knowing how our world is. He chose to do a further step in politics and did formulaze opinions about specific issues of his time, like sexual age of consent, human rights, LGBT issues and democracy.
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