Élisabeth Roudinesco: The Living Thought of Michel Foucault
, Verso Books site, 13 November 2014
Élisabeth Roudinesco, author of Lacan: In Spite of Everything, Jacques Lacan & Co. and Madness and Revolution, among many others, on the writing of Michel Foucault, written for Le Monde in May:
Thirty years after his death, Michel Foucault (1926–1984) is famed the world over. Author of a very rich body of teachings whose scope ranges from his critique of norms and institutions to the history of prisons, medicine, madness and sexuality, this philosopher-historian has enticed liberals, social-democrats, erudite scholars and rebels of all persuasions. Each of these different groups, respectively, sees him as an ardent defender of the invention of the self, an unstinting reformist, a sumptuous commentator on ancient Greek and Roman texts, and a brilliant militant for minorities’ causes. In sum, Foucault’s work is more than ever on the order of the day, as demonstrated by the publication of the lectures he gave at the Collège de France between January and April 1981 with regard to subjectivity and freedom.