Foucault News

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

Foucault, literature, and feminist theories of technology
Dr Lena Wanggren (English Literature, University of Edinburgh)

Science, Technology and Innovation seminar series

Date and Time
2nd Feb 2015 15:30 – 17:00
Room 1.06, Old Surgeons’ Hall, High School Yards
School of Social and Political Science
University of Edinburgh.


Building on French philosopher Michel Foucault’s writings on technology, this paper explores the specific trope of literary texts as technologies, as social and cultural agents. Writing itself in its material, literal, sense is noticeably a technology; writing is made material through the use of technologies, and the alphabet might be seen as one of the most important technologies in world history. Critiquing technological determinism as well as gender essentialism, the paper through feminist theories of technology and examples of technologies such as the bicycle, proposes that exploring literature as technology problematises a definition of the latter, suggesting technology as a volatile concept rather than simply as a tool in the hands of the inventor/author.

Speaker’s biography

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