Foucault News

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

“I would say that Anti-Oedipus (may its authors forgive me) is a book of ethics, the first book of ethics to be written in France in quite a long time. … The Christian moralists sought out traces of the flesh lodged deep in the soul. Deleuze and Guattari, for their part, pursue the slightest traces of fascism in the body.”
Michel Foucault, Preface to Anti-Oedipus.

“This requirement persists in [Spinoza’s] Ethics, albeit understood in a new way. In neither case can it suffice to say that truth is simply present in ideas. We must go on to ask what is it that is present in a true idea. What expresses itself in a true idea? What does it express?”
Gilles Deleuze, Expressionism in Spinoza.

What is that peculiar insistence on ethics that Foucault glimpsed early on? And is it at all engaged with the complications Deleuze makes with Spinoza and Leibniz — a curious ethics expressed in active affectivity of joyous passions contrasted with the passivity of sad passions?: “Most men remain, most of the time, fixated by sad passions which cut them off from their essence and reduce it to the state of an abstraction” (E in S, p. 320). Would we want to say that the sad passions that for the most part afflict most men are the micro-fascisms by which we coerce each other, reducing each to a state of abstraction? How is ‘ethics’ complicated by Deleuze? When we read Deleuze and apply his thinking in myriad fields how do we keep a Deleuzian ethics in sight? How does Deleuze not become a state of abstraction or theoretical strata, cause of its own fascisms?

Affecting Deleuze is a three-day conference that aims to focus on the practical philosophy of Gilles Deleuze, and on practices that engage the philosophy of Deleuze. We aim for papers that foreground a questioning of Deleuzian ‘ethics’ in relation to a thinking that might otherwise approach Deleuze as method or procedure in practical, or one might say, creative assemblages. How would ‘ethics’ differentiate itself from a politics and, more acutely, from a theory of the ethical?

We are calling for

Individual paper presentations — 20-minute papers/10-minute question time. We will thematically group papers for 90-minute sessions.

Panel/group presentations — 90 minutes organized according to your own inventiveness

Abstracts (250-300 words individual / up to 700 words for panel) will be blind reviewed.
Abstract submission no later than Friday 24th August.

Some possible themes to consider for a focus on Deleuze’s ethics:

  • Deleuze’s Foucault: Power, knowledge, self
  • Ethics and the outside of thought (Deleuze and Blanchot)
  • Ideas of Reason (Kant and Deleuze)
  • Aesthetics and Ethics: Expression and affects
  • Deleuze with Guattari: Thinking a new earth
  • Spinoza’s multitudes: Negri and Deleuze

And with respect to a focus on working with Deleuze:

  • Space, design and ethics
  • The image of thought: affectivity and percepts
  • Sensations and matter: Bergson and freedom
  • Ethics and the post-cinematic
  • Societies of Control

Key dates

  • Abstract submission no later than: Friday 24th August
  • Notification of acceptance by: Monday 3rd September
  • Conference early registration opens: Monday 10th September
  • Conference commences: Thursday 18th October at 5.30p.m (opening key note and reception)
  • Conference concludes: Saturday 20th October with conference dinner

Registration rates

  • Full Registration:  $130.00 (NZ)
  • Early Bird Registration (10th to 30th September):  $100.00 (NZ)
  • Student Rate:  $ 65.00 (NZ)
  • Early Bird Student (10th to 30th September):  $ 50.00 (NZ)
  • Conference dinner rate:  To be advised

(Credit card and other payment option details to be confirmed)

Send abstracts and any enquiries to:

Associate Professor Laurence Simmons (University of Auckland) & Associate Professor Mark Jackson (AUT University)

Source: Philevents

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